The Immigration Act of 1965, also known as the Hart-Celler Act, was passed by the United States Congress and signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson. This historic legislation significantly changed the face of America’s immigration policies and had far-reaching effects on national origin and immigration law.
National Origins Quota System:
Before the Immigration Act of 1965, the U.S. operated under a National Origins Quota System, which imposed strict limits on immigration based on country of origin. This system favored immigrants from Western European countries and severely restricted immigration from other regions.
Calls for Reform:
The existing immigration system faced criticism for perpetuating racial and ethnic inequities. The Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s influenced the national conversation, prompting a reconsideration of the discriminatory practices embedded in immigration policies.
President Lyndon B. Johnson:
President Lyndon B. Johnson, a key proponent of civil rights, played a central role in advocating for immigration reform. Motivated by a desire to eliminate discriminatory practices, he supported the push for a more inclusive and egalitarian immigration policy.
Senator Philip Hart:
Senator Philip Hart, known for his commitment to justice and fairness, co-sponsored the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965. His dedication to addressing the inequities in immigration played a crucial role in the development and passage of the legislation.
Congressman Emanuel Celler:
Congressman Emanuel Celler, a stalwart in the House of Representatives, collaborated with Senator Hart to advance immigration reform. His tireless efforts resulted in the drafting and sponsorship of the Immigration Act of 1965.
Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965
The Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, also referred to as the 1965 Act or the Nationality Act of 1965, marked a significant shift in US immigration policy. It replaced the outdated immigration system established by the Johnson-Reed Act of 1924, which had imposed strict quotas based on national origin.
Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 in the 89th Congress
The Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 was introduced in the 89th Congress and underwent extensive congressional hearings. These hearings provided a platform for discussing the need for immigration reform and the social and economic implications of changing the existing immigration laws.
The congressional hearings on the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 brought to light the discriminatory nature of the national origins quota system and the need to modernize the immigration system to reflect the changing needs of the country.
The Voting of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965
After thorough debates and discussions, the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 was voted upon by members of Congress. The act received broad bipartisan support, with lawmakers recognizing the importance of removing discriminatory barriers to immigration and embracing diversity.
President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 into law on October 3, 1965. The enactment of this legislation marked a significant milestone in American history and paved the way for a more inclusive and diverse immigration system.
Immediate Impact on Quota Immigrant Admissions
One of the provisions of the Immigration Act of 1965 was the elimination of the national origins quota system, which had heavily restricted immigration from certain countries. This change led to an increase in immigration from countries that had previously been underrepresented in the United States.
Wages under Foreign Certification
Another provision of the act was the establishment of the Foreign Labor Certification Program. This program aimed to ensure that wages and working conditions of immigrant workers were protected, preventing exploitation and unfair labor practices.
In conclusion, the Immigration Act of 1965, also known as the Hart-Celler Act, was passed by the United States Congress and signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson. The act, which replaced the outdated national origins quota system, had a profound impact on US immigration policy and significantly changed the demographic composition of the country. It was enacted after extensive congressional hearings and received broad bipartisan support. The provisions of the act eliminated discriminatory barriers to immigration and aimed to protect the rights and well-being of immigrant workers.
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