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Mel Martinez

Dairy Cows' Role in U.S. Immigration Reform

From the technology and tourism industries to the fruit growers of California, there is something for almost everyone in the sprawling immigration legislation that the U.S. Senate will start debating this month.But for supporters of this controversial bill who are searching for a solid bloc of votes in the Senate, there might be no better way than through a provision embedded in the law that gives dairy farmers better access to foreign labor.The carefully constructed Senate strategy banks on trying to win over Republican senators representing states scattered throughout the country and where the $35 billion U.S. dairy farm industry contributes heavily to local economies.Backers hope that they will lure these conservative senators - maybe more than a dozen of them - to vote for a bill that they otherwise might not support because of what critics consider its "amnesty" for the 11 million illegal immigrants living in the United States.For example, Wisconsin, Idaho, and Pennsylvania are am...

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