Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is trying to find a way to fast-track a budget maneuver that would enable the legalization of millions of illegal immigrants if bipartisan talks on coming up with a pathway to citizenship don’t produce an outcome the Democratic Party likes, according to reports from the NY Times.
The strategy being employed by Schumer is a backup plan if talks between 15 senators across both political parties fail to come up with some kind of workable compromise.
Schumer has privately told members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus in recent weeks he is “actively exploring” whether it would be possible to attach a broad revision of immigration laws to President Joe Biden’s infrastructure plan and pass it through a process known as budget reconciliation, according to two people briefed on his comments, the Times reported.
“Democrats must act,” says Sergio Gonzales, the director of the Immigration Hub, which pushes for a pro-immigrant agenda in Congress. “Now is the time. This year is the time. We must have citizenship this year.”advertisement — content continues below
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., last month endorsed the idea of using reconciliation to push through an immigration measure, citing the “budget impacts of immigration in our country.” Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., the No. 3 Democrat, also came out in favor of the approach last week, the Times reported.
Members of the GOP who are involved in the current talks have stated that before Congress can take action on undocumented immigrants, they have to address the crisis happening at the southern border with migrants swarming across into the United States.
During the month of March, border agents encountered a whopping 19,000 children at the border, unaccompanied, which is the largest number ever recorded in a single month. Most of these individuals are trying to run away from the poverty and violence that has become common place in Central America.
“Before we can do anything meaningful on immigration, we’re going to have to deal with the current crisis at the border,” said Sen. John Cornyn from Texas, who has been participating in the bipartisan talks. “I don’t think the public is going to tolerate us ignoring this crisis, and it’s just going to get worse unless we deal with it.”
When it comes to pushing Schumer’s immigration agenda through reconciliation, Cornyn said, “I think they’re dreaming; I don’t think the parliamentarian will allow that. That’s not really the purpose of reconciliation.”
“The reconciliation move would allow the measures to pass the evenly divided Senate with 50 Democrat and independent votes, shielding them from a filibuster and the 60-vote threshold for moving past one, which would otherwise require at least 10 Republican votes. Vice President Kamala Harris would cast the 51st vote in the event of a 50-50 tie,” Newsmax says.
Secure the border. Then enforce the laws already on the books. That’s it. We don’t need to compromise on anything or change anything. Just do what the law says to do. That will solve the problem.