Senate parliamentarian rejects Democrats’ second attempt to include immigration in economic bill
Democrats argued this time to parliamentarian that they included a provision to change the registration date from 1972 to 2010 for immigrant legalization and that it could be passed using budget reconciliation.
Senatorial MP Elizabeth MacDonough, an official who advises the Senate on how its rules, protocols and precedents should be applied, dismissed the Democrats’ second argument after submitting a memo on Tuesday.
“This registry proposal is also a proposal in which people who are not currently eligible to adjust their status under the law (a substantial proportion of the target population) would become eligible, which is an important policy change and our This issue’s analysis is therefore largely the same as the LPR proposal, ”MacDonough wrote in a response, which was obtained by CNN.
The source told CNN that they believe this struggle to include immigration reform “is not over,” but it is – again – a huge loss for Democrats who want to include these provisions as a last-ditch reform effort.
The move marks the latest setback for Democrats who have placed their hopes of pushing immigration reform through this year on the reconciliation bill.
Following the parliamentarian’s decision, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin called it a “disappointment”.
“Unfortunately, we can’t find the clear language for reconciliation,” Durbin said, adding that Democrats plan to continue to find a way to include it in the bill.
Senator Bob Menendez, Democrat of New Jersey and another champion of immigration reform, also added to the disappointment of Democrats and called the decision “unfortunate.”
“I don’t agree with her, like I did with her original premise that she’s working on. I don’t agree with the premise that she came out with,” he said. said, referring to the parliamentarian’s decision that the budgetary impact is eclipsed by the significant impact of the policy. cash.
Menendez said Democrats “will switch to Plan C,” but he did not specify what that would entail. He said he didn’t know when they were going to meet the parliamentarian again, but said: “We have a plan C prepared, we just need to talk about its execution.”
These hopes, however, may be fading.
For years, Congress has tried unsuccessfully to pass legislation to pave the way for citizenship or otherwise approach the immigration system. In the absence of legislation, the Obama administration, and now the Biden administration, has relied on DACA to ensure that the group known as “Dreamers” – many of whom are now adults – can stay and work in the United States.
This week, the Biden administration took action to salvage the Obama-era Child Arrivals Deferred Action Program that protects hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children against deportation.
The Department of Homeland Security has announced a proposed rule that will go through a public comment period, but stressed that it is still not a final substitute for congressional action.
“The Biden-Harris administration continues to take steps to protect dreamers and recognize their contributions to this country,” Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said in a statement. “This notice of proposed rulemaking is an important step in achieving that goal. However, only Congress can provide ongoing protection. I support the inclusion of immigration reform in the reconciliation bill and urge the Congress to act quickly to provide dreamers with the legal status they need and deserve. “
White House press secretary Jen Psaki responded to the decision by reaffirming the Biden administration’s commitment to work on overhauling the U.S. immigration system.
“We are determined to bring immigration reform to fruition,” Psaki said. “That, I think, would renew a look at what vehicles and options can be.”
This story was updated with additional developments on Wednesday.
CNN’s Lauren Fox and Manu Raju contributed to this report.