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Trump says Democrats are 'AWOL' on immigration

Trump says Democrats are 'AWOL' on immigration

Democrats have said repeatedly they want continued protections for the Dreamers, whose status was threatened when Trump said in September he was ending by March 5 former President Barack Obama's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

Trump is insisting that any immigration bill that reaches his desk have four components: Legal status for DREAMers with a path to citizenship in 10 to 12 years; $25 billion for border security; limits to family-based reunification, which he calls "chain migration", and an end to the diversity visa lottery system, which gives preferences to many Irish, Polish and African immigrants. That law allowed Dreamers to temporarily study and work in the United States without fear of deportation.

But Trump's remarks and the pending deadline stand to keep attention on one of the most pressing and divisive matters confronting the GOP.

"Listen, we are not going to do a few billion dollars for border security and have the same problem a decade from now, two decades from now", Meadows told reporters.

A key phrase Trump used on Tuesday was that our nation needs to bring immigration reform, "to the 21st century".

The report, authored by Cato scholars David Bier and Stuart Anderson, found that the administration's plan, if implemented, would eventually reduce the number of legal immigrants by 490,000 people annually, down from just over 1.1 million to approximately 600,000, a 44 percent reduction.

Thune acknowledged that the base bill and what's included is still not determined.

Declines in immigration will further be offset by granting an amnesty to 1.8 million DACA-eligible immigrants, CIS argued. "But the other stuff, if the stakes get raised and then other issues enter the conversation it gets more complicated, and it gets harder to pass in the House".

Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., said GOP leaders have promised them four times they would not do another short-term funding bill - called a continuing resolution or "CR" - and that they were working to secure a large and lasting boost for defense.

Ryan and other Republicans said negotiators are making progress, and some Democrats agreed. Democrats have denounced the plan, saying the cuts to legal immigration are draconian.

Regardless, factions in the House and Senate continue to discuss a deal, the Post reported.

Separately, a bipartisan group of senators has been meeting to gauge what kind of bill can attract broad support in the Senate.

The debate over immigration policy has become closely enmeshed with looming deadlines over government spending. "We want people coming into our country based on merit, and based on the fact that they are going to love our country, and they are going to respect our people and our country".

"There are obviously disagreements, sure, about what it ought to include", Thune said.

Author information: Sean Sullivan has covered national politics for The Washington Post since 2012.

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