(June 20) In what could be the last gasp for comprehensive immigration reform in the U.S. Senate for this year, a rare procedural tactic may allow for consideration and a vote on the stalled legislation before the July Fourth holiday.

Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., has revived a seldom used tactic called a “clay pigeon” to move the comprehensive immigration legislation forward, said Sharon Hughes, executive vice president of the Washington, D.C.-based National Council of Agricultural Employers.

Under the procedure, Republicans and Democrats will be limited to 11 amendments per side.

“There is talk about limiting the whole debate to 30 hours,” Hughes said.

Debate was expected to begin June 21 or June 22 and could proceed through the weekend, Hughes said. Votes on all the amendments would come at the end of the time allotted for debate.

Hughes said Reid wouldn’t bring back the bill unless he had the 60 votes to end debate and bring the bill to a vote.

She noted Reid also said he may keep the Senate in session into the July Fourth break if the chamber can’t finish energy and immigration legislation.

Still, lobbyists said there remained dangers ahead.

“It is still a 50-50 deal,” said Robert Guenther, senior vice president of public policy at the United Fresh Produce Association, Washington, D.C. “The fact the Senate is bringing it back up is a good sign.”

How various amendments could damage the bill is a question, he said.

Of particular concern, Hughes said, are amendments that relate to undocumented workers already in the U.S. Some amendments may try to increase the requirements of earning a path to legalization.

Meanwhile, Hughes said “enforcement-only” legislation was introduced in the House by Rep. Steve King, D-Iowa, and others.

“That is dead on arrival,” Hughes said, adding that the House Subcommittee on Immigration is expected to put forward a more complete bill after the Senate concludes its debates.

While that House immigration bill will be different than the Senate’s, the hope is that it will be close enough that details can be worked out in conference, Hughes said.