Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell opened the Senate Monday by repeating an offer to Democrats that, in exchange for their vote to reopen the partially shuttered government, he would bring a bill to the floor by next month that would protect Dreamers.
“It would be my intention to take up legislation here in the Senate that would address [Dreamers], border security and related issues as well as defense funding, healthcare, and other important matters,” the Kentucky Republican said.
As of last night, Democratic leaders were opposed to the deal, which would provide government funding until Feb. 8 and set yet another deadline to resolve a host of unfinished business, including immigration.
The government has been partially closed since after midnight on Friday.
“We have yet to reach agreement on a path forward that would be acceptable to both sides,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said late Sunday.
McConnell did not signal which immigration bill would be offered.
Democrats and a group of moderate Republicans want to debate legislation authored by Sens. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and Dick Durbin, D-Ill., that would protect children of illegal immigrants in exchange for some border wall money and other security provisions.
Conservative Republicans oppose the Graham-Durbin bill and want more aggressive changes to interior immigration enforcement, chain migration, and the visa lottery system.
McConnell said the immigration debate “will have a level playing field … and an amendment process that is fair to all sides.”
He called for a bill “that can actually be signed into law,” by Trump, who appears to be opposed to the Graham-Durbin measure.