GOP Announces New Passport Reform Plan

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

(TargetLiberty.org) – New legislation has been introduced that would completely overhaul the processing system for passports. The hope is that with the changes the massive backlog in the United States will be cleared out, allowing for passports to be created faster. A top committee has already expressed unanimous support for the bill, while the bill’s author has argued that there was a good chance that the new legislation would be turned into law in the next year.

Since the pandemic, Americans have had to face large delays in passport processing, as the State Department currently states that the waiting time for passport processing ranges between seven and 10 weeks. However, with the new legislation, lawmakers are hopeful that they will be able to reduce the waiting times. Currently, the United States has significant delays in the creation of passports, while other countries have significantly shorter processing times, and online functionality is greater.

This year, Secretary of State Antony Blinken informed lawmakers that during the pandemic, there had been no interest in the passports and visa department as the demand was extremely low. Due to the demand plummeting “the bottom basically dropped out of the system.” As he argued they have now been working to make sure that the agency is rebuilt in order to handle the processing. While rebuilding they are also called to handle the intense increase in demand for passports and visas now that travel has opened back up.

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