Moderate Republicans push discharge petition to try to pass DACA
- Author: Joey Payne May 11, 2018,
May 11, 2018, 0:44
Denham said they had enough support to succeed. "That means the White House has to be a part of this". That could spell fresh headaches for GOP leaders, whose party is divided between backers of President Donald Trump's hard-line views and more pragmatic members.
The rule would see all four competing immigration bills brought to the floor for debate and a vote, with the measure receiving the biggest vote margin in favor being the one that passes.
Now, a small group of House Republicans - many of them moderates and many with large Hispanic constituencies - are clamoring to revive legislation. "Our job is to make sure all of the bills that all of us have worked really hard on have a voice on the floor".
The rebel Republicans are using what's known on Capitol Hill as a discharge petition, which is a way for lawmakers to push bills to the floor over the objections of the majority party's leaders, who traditionally control the floor schedule.
In a meeting Tuesday with Ryan, Denham said he told the speaker he had the backing he needs. "The people that told me said that it didn't change their mind". "He does not threaten people, at least not that I'm aware of".
Centrist House Republicans have defied Speaker Paul Ryan and moved ahead with plans to force an immigration floor vote that could save the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and protect Dreamers, or undocumented children brought to the US, from deportation.
Republican Majority Whip Steve Scalise of Louisiana hopes to stop 25 Republicans from signing the Queen of the Hill discharge petition. Under House rules, the earliest the chamber would vote on the group's proposal is late June.
Of the four immigration measures, the bipartisan compromise is considered likeliest to prevail.
Ryan said he's willing to have a debate over illegal immigrant "Dreamers" but said Thursday the key is to find a bill that President Trump will sign - suggesting none of the efforts being pushed by rebel Republicans and Democrats meets that goal.
Even if the House approves something, its fate would be uncertain in the Senate, where no proposal from either side has garnered enough votes to break opponents' filibusters.
Denham introduced his proposal in March and has 248 co-sponsors, including virtually all Democrats and more than 50 Republicans. They say the petition would wrest control over the House agenda away from Ryan.
It isn't rare for members to file discharge petitions; what's rare is for the petitions to succeed.
President Trump announced a year ago that he planned to revoke protections for roughly 700,000 of those immigrants who filed under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. "This time, let's have a debate and produce a compromise that brings Americans together - those who want to strengthen border security and enforce our immigration laws and those who believe we should welcome the young immigrants who arrived in our country as children, grew up here, and are already contributing to the greatness of America".
A conservative House bill would let DACA's "Dreamer" recipients stay in the US temporarily, but also reduce legal immigration, allow construction of Trump's proposed border wall with Mexico and crack down on "sanctuary cities" that don't cooperate with federal immigration authorities.
The DREAM Act aims to create a path to citizenship for DACA recipients, while the U.S.A. Act, sponsored by Hurd and Democratic Rep. Pete Aguilar, seeks to create a path to legalization for Dreamers while putting limits on sponsorship of parents once they become citizens.
The bipartisan compromise by Reps. It would take steps toward toughening border security but would not specifically authorize Trump's wall.
As the fourth bill, Ryan would be allowed to offer any plan he wants. The bill that wins the most support above the threshold to pass outright, moves on to the Senate.