US Democrats’ attempt to reform immigration laws blocked in Senate | Migration news

The setback for reform advocates comes as the United States faces a new migrant crisis on the southern border with Mexico.

A proposal by Democratic lawmakers in the US Congress to allow millions of immigrants to legally reside in the country has been blocked in the US Senate.

The Senate MP, an unelected official who rules on key procedural matters, said on September 19 that a Democratic plan to attach the immigration proposal to a $ 3.5 trillion spending bill did not was not allowed by Senate rules, lawmakers said.

“We are deeply disappointed by this decision but the fight to provide legal status to immigrants as part of fiscal reconciliation continues,” Democratic Senate Leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement.

The Democratic proposal, which most Republicans oppose, would pave the way for citizenship for an estimated eight million undocumented immigrants, many of whom came to the United States as children.

Agricultural workers, essential workers and immigrants with temporary protection status, who grant work permits and deportation assistance to people from countries affected by violence or natural disasters, would also benefit from the plan. .

The setback for U.S. immigration reform advocates came as the Biden administration faced a new migrant crisis on the southern border with Mexico. Authorities forcibly deport some of the 12,000 Haitian migrants who have gathered under a road bridge that connects Del Rio, Texas, to Ciudad Acuna, Mexico.

Migrants seeking refuge in the United States return to Mexico via the Rio Bravo River, which divides the border between Ciudad Acuna, Mexico and Del Rio, Texas, to avoid deportation on September 19. [Daniel Becerril/Reuters]

US officials said the flights included some of the 3,300 migrants displaced from under the bridge since Friday, and the government aims to “swiftly” treat another 12,662 living in the camp over the next seven days.

Senate Democrats have prepared alternative proposals and would hold further meetings with the Senate parliamentarian, Schumer added.

A legislative appeal has become all the more urgent following a court ruling in July that overturned a federal program ordered by former President Barack Obama that protects around 640,000 young immigrants from deportation.

Sen. Chuck Grassley, the top Republican on the Judicial Committee, praised the parliamentarian’s decision.

“Mass amnesty for millions of illegal immigrants is not an appropriate budget issue for reconciliation,” Grassley said on Twitter.

Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell said: “Democrats will not be able to squeeze their most sweeping amnesty proposals into the reckless fiscal and spending madness they are assembling behind closed doors.

Senatorial MP Elizabeth MacDonough has ruled that if reform is allowed in the budget bill – which Democrats can pass with just 51 votes – a future Senate could overturn anyone’s immigration status on the basis of a vote to simple majority.

It would be a “staggering development … and further proof that the policy changes in this proposal far outweigh the budgetary impact attributed to it,” MacDonough said.

“It is not appropriate for inclusion in reconciliation.”

As a Senate parliamentarian, MacDonough advises lawmakers on what is acceptable under the rules and precedents of the chamber, sometimes with lasting consequences.

Chosen by the Senate majority leader, the incumbent should be non-partisan. MacDonough, in office since 2012 under Republicans and Democrats, banned the inclusion of a minimum wage increase in a COVID-19 aid bill earlier this year.

Most US Senate bills require the support of 60 of the 100 members to be voted on. But the Senate is currently split 50-50 50-50 between Democrats and Republicans, with Democrats holding the deciding vote for Vice President Kamala Harris.

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