Gang of Eight (immigration)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Gang of Eight was a bi-partisan group of eight United States Senators—four Democrats and four Republicans—who wrote the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013.[1]

In June 2013, S.744 passed the Senate with a strong majority—68–32, with 14 Republicans joining all Democrats. The United States House of Representatives under Speaker John Boehner did not act on the bill, however, and it expired at the end of the 113th Congress.[2]


In the context of proposed immigration reform, the Gang of Eight consists of the following four Democratic and four Republican senators.[3] Of the eight senators that originally composed the group, six remain in office as of 2024. John McCain died in 2018 and Jeff Flake's term ended in 2019.


According to a National Law Review article, the policies envisioned by the Gang of Eight include the following provisions:[5]

  • A path to citizenship for illegal immigrants[6] already in the United States is contingent on certain border security and visa tracking improvements. The plan provides for permanent residence for illegal aliens only after legal aliens waiting for a current priority date receive their permanent residence status and a different citizenship path for agricultural workers through an agricultural worker program.
  • Business immigration system reforms, focusing on reducing current visa backlogs and fast tracking permanent residence for U.S. university student visa graduates with advanced degrees in science, technology, engineering or math also known as the STEM fields.
  • An expanded and improved employment verification system for all employers to confirm employee work authorization.
  • Improved work visa options for low-skilled workers including an agricultural worker program.


  1. ^ Roeper, Jennifer; Fowler White Boggs P.A. (February 21, 2013). "Immigration Reform Highlights from the Senate Committee on the Judiciary Hearing". The National Law Review. Retrieved April 2, 2013.
  2. ^ David Nakamura & Ed O'Keefe, Timeline: The rise and fall of immigration reform, Washington Post (June 26, 2014).
  3. ^ Alexander Bolton (May 24, 2013). "Gang of Eight's strategy for winning immigration floor fight: Stick together". The Hill. Retrieved June 9, 2013.
  4. ^ "Senators Reach a Bipartisan Agreement for Comprehensive Immigration Reform". National Law Review. Fowler White Boggs P.A. January 31, 2013. Retrieved February 1, 2013.
  5. ^ "Senators Propose Immigration Reform". National Law Review. Varnum LLP. January 29, 2013. Retrieved July 31, 2015.
  6. ^ "8 U.S. Code § 1101 - Definitions". Cornell Law School, Legal Information Institute. Retrieved November 2, 2017.