Rising to the president’s challenge of addressing Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) participants in the United States and maintaining a commitment to debate DACA/immigration in exchange for cooperation on last week’s Budget Agreement, Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY, Majority Leader) began an immigration week debate in the U.S. Senate. The process unfolded slowly and reached a crescendo Thursday with a series of votes on various immigration packages. Due to Senate procedures, all legislative amendments were required to receive 60+ votes to proceed for Senate consideration. At the end of the process, no package package – Durbin for McCain- Coons amendment (DACA + Border), Toomey amendment (Sanctuary Cities), Schumer amendment (Bi-partisan Common Sense Coalition) (DACA + Security/Wall) or Grassley (White House Four Pillars- Wall, Border, Chain Migration, Diversity Lottery ) amendment met the threshold for further action.
The House of Representatives is currently discussing an immigration approach authored by House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) to determine Republican conference support. Speaker Ryan has stated that if there is majority-of-the-majority support for the Goodlatte approach, the House could move to the bill at the end of March.
March 5 is the deadline the president established in September 2017 for Congress to act on DACA.