Senate lawmakers reached a deal Monday to end a three-day government shutdown, and both houses of Congress — as well as President Donald Trump — gave final approval to the measure, which funds the government for another three weeks.
However, even with the shutdown over and thousands of furloughed federal employees set to go back to work Tuesday, the gap between Republicans and Democrats is still apparent, as noted by Business Insider.
Following news that a compromise had been reached, Trump put out a statement regarding a future deal on immigration reform. The shutdown had started because Democrats wanted to immediately address the issue of what to do about recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, program.
“I am pleased that Democrats in Congress have come to their senses and are now willing to fund our great military, border patrol, first responders, and insurance for vulnerable children,” Trump said in his statement.
He indicated that the only immigration deal he would approve is one that benefits Americans.
“As I have always said, once the Government is funded, my Administration will work toward solving the problem of very unfair illegal immigration,” he added. “We will make a long-term deal on immigration if, and only if, it is good for our country.”
Later, Trump took to Twitter to tout a “big win for Republicans.”
“Big win for Republicans as Democrats cave on Shutdown,” he wrote.
“Now I want a big win for everyone, including Republicans, Democrats and DACA, but especially for our Great Military and Border Security. Should be able to get there. See you at the negotiating table!”
The current spending deal that the president signed will keep the government funded through Feb. 8, a mere eight days earlier than the original bill that failed to pass on Friday, leading to the shutdown in the first place.
But Democrat leaders in Congress opposed that bill on the basis that it did not address the roughly 700,000 illegal immigrants who came to the U.S. as children.
Now, many are still left wondering what the future holds, not only for the long-term spending bill that is to come, but also for the agreement congressional leaders will make regarding DACA.
The impasse from Friday’s failed negotiation was broken after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky agreed to address the DACA issue, but some remain worried the deal fell short of Democrats’ original request regarding immigration, as there is nothing to bind Republicans to the recent deal.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York, who helped to negotiate the bill that ended the shutdown, stated that if McConnell did not hold to his promise of addressing DACA by Feb. 8, the Kentucky Republican “will have breached” trust.
The key part of the legislation regarding immigration is the codification of the DACA program, which would protect nearly 700,000 undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as minors from deportation.
In September, Trump gave Congress six months to negotiate a bill regarding DACA, as the current program would come to a close by March 2018.
South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham was part of a bipartisan group of lawmakers attempting to find a compromise to end the shutdown shutdown, has claimed that the White House is making it difficult to negotiate on immigration reform.
“As long as Stephen Miller is in charge of negotiating immigration, we are going nowhere,” Graham said, directing blame on Miller — a White House senior adviser — and adding that lawmakers “don’t have a reliable partner at the White House to negotiate with.”
“I’ve talked with the president — his heart is right on this issue,” Graham stated. “He’s got a good understanding of what will sell, and every time we have a proposal it is only yanked back by staff members.”
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