Changes to the United States Visa Waiver Program

As of now, there are 38 countries the US considers friendly. If you are a citizen of one of those countries, you can fly to the United States and stay up to 90 days by showing your passport, without the need for a visa. However, after the terrorist attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, the House of Representatives has passed H.R. 158, the Visa Waiver Improvement Act of 2015. This bill would bar those who have visited Iraq, Syria, Iran or the Sudan in the past five years from utilizing the Visa Waiver Program.

This bill enjoyed broad bipartisan support and was passed on Tuesday December 8 by a vote of 407 to 19. The bill also requires greater sharing of information from the 38 friendly countries with the Department of Homeland Security. 

This bill is not yet law; from here it would have to be voted up by the United States Senate and then be signed by President Obama. However, the bill does have the backing of President Obama, and may indeed become law.