Senators and Congressmen have a long history of attaching pet amendments to budget and funding bills. They know that these bills are “must pass” legislation, meaning that Congress will certainly pass a budget or else the entire government would shut down. Since budget and funding bills are must pass, prized amendments get approved without going through the usual route, working their way through subcommittees and full committees. This year several odd amendments were offered.
Sen. Hatch (R-UT) offered an amendment that sought to allow the conference committee to raise the H-1B cap, increase STEM visas, raise the green card cap, and increase the H-1B fee. Sen. Grassley (R-IA) sought the exact opposite. He hoped to restrict H-1B usage. Neither amendment was successful.