According to a Capitol Hill publication called The Hill, foreign governments are once again lobbying Congress to enact a broad-based amnesty bill.  (The Hill, Feb. 7, 2013) Several countries that drive immigration to the United States — notably Mexico, Ireland and Central American nations — have been making their concerns known.  (Id.)

One of the main reasons for the concern: remittances.  Foreign nationals living and working in the United States send huge amounts of money to family members in their home countries.  In 2010, remittances to Mexico totaled $22.7 billion; remittances to El Salvador totaled $3.6 billion, or about 17.4 percent of that country’s economy.  (Id.)

“Of course the reason embassies would be interested is these are the people who have been working and sending remittances home,” commented Maryland State Delegate Ana Sol Gutierrez (D). “And because they have a legal work permit and because they’re paying taxes and they have driver’s licenses, they are a lot more stable — and have access to better jobs — than the undocumented.”

Mexico’s U.S. Ambassador, Eduardo Medina-Mora, has had “a number of meetings with the administration” that have involved immigration since he took office last month, said a Mexican official familiar with the process. He is expected to meet with lawmakers shortly as legislation begins to take form. “Probably like no other country, we are a player in this particular issue,” the source said. “If we have the need to say something, we will do so, but with the utmost respect to the domestic politics.”

Similarly, Ireland has long lobbied Congress for amnesty legislation.  And just last Tuesday, Ireland’s U.S. Ambassador, Michael Collins, discussed immigration policy with U.S. Rep. Luis Gutiérrez (D-Ill.) during a meeting on Capitol Hill. The Irish embassy described Gutierrez as a “great friend of Ireland” and added, “Ambassador Collins was delighted to meet with him for a discussion about U.S. immigration issues, on which the congressman is a key figure.” (Id.)