The hopes of full citizenship for over 50,000 undocumented Irish in the United States received a significant boost last night.
Republicans in the House of Representatives held a meeting during which they agreed to their own version of an immigration reform bill.
It follows the approval of a Bill by the US Senate - and Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore will visit Washington today in a bid to capitalise on the momentum.
Niall O'Dowd, founder of the Irish Central, said that Mr Gilmore's bid to lobby support among US politicians could have an impact.
"I think it can certainly help with one crucial segment which is the house of republicans they are the critical people he needs to talk to," he said.
"The likes of Paul Ryan and Kevin McCarthy, key Irish Americans in leadership positions in the republican party
"If they hear from an Irish leaders like Eamon Gilmore I think that he would get the ear of people like Paul Ryan."