WASHINGTON — Republican leaders began the problematic task of finding support for an immigration compromise Wednesday, telling lawmakers that President Donald Trump was backing the still-evolving bill. But cracks within the party were on full display and it seemed that pushing the measure through the House next week would be a challenge.
“If it was a resolution on apple pie, you’re going to lose some votes, some Republican votes,” said Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, R-Fla.
A day after top Republicans said the House would vote next week on two competing immigration measures, it was widely assumed that a hard-right measure would lose. That bill would give young “Dreamer” immigrants just limited opportunities to remain in the U.S. while imposing tough restrictions on legal immigration and bolstering border security.
GOP leaders, negotiating with quarreling moderates and conservatives, were still writing the second bill. Republicans said it would contain a way for Dreamers to qualify for permanent residence and potentially become citizens, while accepting conservatives’ demands to finance Trump’s proposed border wall with Mexico and restrictions on legal immigration.
With Republicans battling to keep their House majority in November’s elections, merely staging the immigration votes, win or lose, achieves some political objectives. The plan helped party leaders block unhappy moderates trying to force the House to consider immigration bills considered too liberal by many Republicans, and will let lawmakers assert that they tried addressing the issue.
If both bills lose, “at least you know where everyone stands,” said Rep. Warren Davidson, R-Ohio, a member of the hard-right House Freedom Caucus.
Democrats seemed likely to solidly oppose both packages. A day after House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said Democrats would fight any measure advancing Trump’s immigration policies, the leader of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus said her group’s goal was to have “zero Democratic support” for the GOP bills.
Rep. Michelle …read more
Source:: Deseret News – U.S. & World News