The White House said on Wednesday it plans to release the outline for immigration legislation that it believes can pass muster with both Republicans and Democrats in the U.S. Congress.
The White House said on Wednesday it plans to release the outline for immigration legislation that it believes can pass muster with both Republicans and Democrats in the U.S. Congress. The framework comes as lawmakers resume tough negotiations on the fate of young immigrants known as “Dreamers” who were brought to the United States illegally as children. Wrangling over immigration policy was part of the reason for the brief government shutdown this week. Republican President Donald Trump has said protections for the young immigrants will end in March unless Congress passes a new law. But he and other Republicans are also pushing to curb family-sponsored immigration and end a lottery program for immigrants from certain countries.
Trump has also insisted on funding for his long-promised wall along the U.S.-Mexican border and other security measures. “The framework that you see on Monday will be born out of a lot of those conversations that we’ve had with a number of members, both Republicans, Democrats; House and Senate,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders told reporters. “We’ve taken into account all of the conversations that we’ve had, both at the presidential and the staff level, and tried to incorporate that,” Sanders said. A bipartisan group of senators – at least 36 of them – were planning to meet on Capitol Hill later on Wednesday to discuss how to move forward on immigration legislation. Republican Senator Susan Collins said the discussions could lead to several proposals, not just one piece of legislation.
“I think today is an opportunity to discuss a path forward and how we proceed to get to a bill, or to get to a variety of bills that can be considered on the Senate floor and do so quickly. Time is very short,” she said. Republican Senator Jeff Flake said he hoped the group would determine the process for the next two weeks. “I think we all know the contours of everything, but still it’s going to be a tough process,” Flake said. Senator Joe Donnelly, a Democrat, said he wanted to discuss both immigration and border security. Asked if the Senate should try to coordinate with the White House, Donnelly said: “I think we’re going to try to do our work and take care of our business.”