Schumer ‘Actively Exploring’ Granting Citizenship to Millions of Illegal Immigrants Without GOP Support

POLITICS & POLICY
Asylum-seeking migrant families wait to be transported by the U.S. Border Patrol after crossing the Rio Grande river into the United States from Mexico in La Joya, Texas, April 27, 2021. (Go Nakamura/Reuters)

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) told members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus that he is “actively exploring” ways to grant citizenship to millions of illegal immigrants via budget reconciliation, two people familiar with the discussions told the New York Times.

Passing such legislation via budget reconciliation rules would require a simple majority vote in the Senate, rather than the filibuster-proof threshold of 60 votes required for most legislation. Schumer is reportedly considering passing the citizenship bill along with President Biden’s infrastructure bill via reconciliation, should negotiations over a standalone immigration bill break down.

However, it is unclear whether the move would receive approval of the Senate parliamentarian, who interprets and arbitrates Senate rules and procedures. Senator John Cornyn (R., Texas) was skeptical that the parliamentarian would allow legislation to legalize undocumented immigrants to pass via budget reconciliation.

“I think they’re dreaming; I don’t think the parliamentarian will allow that. That’s not really the purpose of reconciliation,” Cornyn told the Times.

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Cornyn also emphasized that “before we can do anything meaningful on immigration, we’re going to have to deal with the current crisis at the border.”

Sources familiar with Schumer’s thinking believe he will argue that there is precedent for using the procedure to change immigration policy. Republicans, including Cornyn, supported the use budget reconciliation to reclaim unused visas in 2005, although that was a more limited action that what Schumer would be proposing in this case.

Members of the Hispanic Caucus have previously stated that the president is open to passing immigration reform via budget reconciliation if Democrats don’t receive GOP support.

Biden generally “supports passing certain immigration reforms by reconciliation if we can’t get the 10 Republican votes,” Representative Darren Soto (D., Fla.) told Politico in mid-April.

Biden released his immigration bill in January, calling to legalize roughly 11 million migrants currently residing in the U.S.

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1 Comment

  1. What does provbidig criminals with citizednshipo have anything to do with “President Biden’s infrastructure bill via reconciliation”? Oh yes its the liberals once again trying to reward these illehal aliens for their demonstrated crimional actions and they will use any means in their “POWER” to accomplish their goals! For example the American criminal justice system holds almost 2.3 million people in 1,833 state prisons yet unlike the illegal aligns they have been seperated from their families as a result of their actions. Now the liberals are yelling and supporfting the need of ilegal aligns to be reunited with their familes – talk about hypocripsy and discrimination but then the liberals want folks to believe that they have their best interset in mind! If so they why don’t they concentrate on our citizens like the homeles, veterans, failing VA system not to mentio Social Security. Libearls and their supporters support a minimum wage increase to $15.00 per hour as an individual cannot live on anything else. Yet these same hypocrites ignore our seniors who depend of Social Secuirty for their income who have paid their whole working lives into the system and are making an average of $5.00 dollars an hour. So who are these hypocrites helping – not the average American tax paying citizen that for sure!

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