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Clinton pledges to repeal 3 and 10 year bans on illegals returning to U.S.

Clinton pledges to repeal 3 and 10 year bans on illegals returning to U.S.

Abby Phillip | The Washington Post

Hillary Clinton on Thursday pledged to repeal an immigration provision that blocks undocumented immigrant from returning to the United States legally for a wait period of either three or ten years.

The provision, which was included in the 1996 Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act, prevented undocumented immigrants who had overstayed their visas or crossed the border illegally from returning to the U.S. legally after an extended wait period, depending on the length of time that they had been in the country illegally.

Clinton’s pledge came in response to a question at the MSNBC/Telemundo town hall in Las Vegas Nevada that was actually asked of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders. A woman in the audience said that while she and her children were legal immigrants, her husband was not and had voluntarily left the country seeking to normalize his status. According to the 1996 provision, he was ordered to remain in Mexico for 10 years before he could be reunited with his family in the United States.

“I want to tell you, I will end the three and ten-year bar provision so that you do not have to ever face that again,” Clinton said pointing the woman out in the audience after Sanders had left the stage.

Sanders, when faced with the same question from the woman earlier in the event, responded that he would work with Congress to address the issue.

“My own view is that our policy as a nation and what I believe is, you should unite families not divide families,” Sanders said. “You should not be sending people back to a country that you can barely remember.”

Undoing the provision would require an act of Congress, Clinton acknowledged.

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