Senate passes key hurdle to passage of immigration bill - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Senate passes key hurdle to passage of immigration bill

CAPITOL HILL - The Senate has cleared the way for a final vote on a comprehensive immigration bill. The Senate vote to limit debate was 73-to-25, easily more than the 60 votes needed.

The bill calls for tougher border security and offers a chance at citizenship for millions of illegal immigrants. Senator Edward Kennedy says the vote gives the bill "major momentum." Senator John McCain says the bill has withstood several "cleverly crafted" amendments that would have destroyed it.

A final vote on the bill is expected by tomorrow. Senate approval would set the stage for tough negotiations with the House. The House bill focuses on enforcement and says all illegal immigrants should be charged with a felony.

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