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Senate panel OKs changes sought by tech firms in immigration bill

Senator Charles Schumer of New York speaks at the Temple Emanu-El during the annual Holocaust Remembrance Day in New York April 7, 2013. REU
Senator Charles Schumer of New York speaks at the Temple Emanu-El during the annual Holocaust Remembrance Day in New York April 7, 2013. REU

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A Senate panel voted on Tuesday to make it easier for U.S. companies to hire foreign workers as part of a broad immigration bill being debated in Congress.

The Senate Judiciary Committee voted for the amendment, which would loosen requirements that employers recruit Americans ahead of foreigners for high-tech jobs.

The compromise was brokered by Democratic Senator Charles Schumer to win over Senator Orrin Hatch, a Republican whose support is seen as important to bring other conservatives on board with broader immigration reform.

(Reporting by Caren Bohan, Richard Cowan and Rachelle Younglai; editing by Christopher Wilson)

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