The Senate on Thursday rejected an immigration proposal that was based on demands from President Trump.
The proposal, authored by Iowa Republican Chuck Grassley, was the fourth proposal to be rejected since the debate on immigration began Monday afternoon.
Grassley’s proposal included exactly what President Trump has asked for:
- Citizenship opportunities for 1.8 million undocumented immigrants
- $25 billion for border security
- Tougher interior enforcement
- New limits on legal immigration
“If Dems are actually serious about DACA, they should support the Grassley bill!” tweeted Trump on Thursday afternoon.
Despite intense pressure from Republicans, the White House, and President Trump, the proposal earned just 39 of the 60 votes it needed.
“I share the President’s commitment to border security,” said Joe Manchin (D-WV), one of just three Democrats to support the bill. “That’s why I voted for his plan. That’s why I fought to ensure the $25 billion he requested for border security was included in the bipartisan deal. That’s why I opposed the Democratic proposal that did not provide a single penny for border security.”
Senators also rejected a plan by John McCain (R-AZ) and Chris Coons (D-DE) that would provide citizenship opportunities to Dreamers in exchange for a “study” on border security.
The first few days of the immigration debate have made it painfully clear that Republicans are unwilling to vote for a plan that Trump does not support and Democrats are unwilling to accept a “take-it-or-leave-it” option for DACA protections.
Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY) accused Trump of standing in the way of “every single proposal that has had a chance to become law” and lambasted him for trying to spike the deal. “Why? Because it isn’t 100% of what the president wants on immigration? That’s not how democracy works. You don’t get 100% of what you want in a democracy…Maybe in a dictatorship.”
It is unclear how the Senate debate will proceed from here, but lawmakers aren’t ready to give up yet.
“Even though this week has been squandered, this does not have to be the end of our efforts,” said Senate Majority Leader Mitch MCConnell (R-KY). President Trump “has gone more than halfway to meet the Democrats and resolve this matter. If they’re actually interested in finding a solution, it’s time they take yes for an answer.”
Lawmakers have until March 5th to reach an agreement. If they fail, millions of former DACA recipients could face deportation.
Editor’s note: Trump must stick to his guns on this, the Democrats are in a lose-lose situation. Unfortunately McCain and others are perfectly willing to give in to the Democrats demands at the drop of a hat.