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US Senate Passes Immigration Reform

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The U.S. Senate has passed an immigration reform bill that would open the path to citizenship to 11-million undocumented immigrants.

Thursday's vote was 68 to 32.

The bill would allow 11-million immigrants who came to the United States illegally to stay in the country while giving them the chance to become citizens.

At the same time, the overhaul calls for much tighter security along the country's southern border with Mexico by providing 20,000 more border patrol agents and 1,100 kilometers of new fencing.

President Barack Obama backs the immigration bill, calling Thursday's Senate vote a critical step closer to fixing what he says is a broken system. But the bill first must go to the House of Representatives, where passage is much less certain.

Conservative Republicans oppose what they say would be an amnesty for those who broke the law.

Feature Story

FILE - President Barack Obama waves as he boards Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland en route to Southeast Asia, November 17, 2012.

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