President Donald Trump on Thursday will formally ask Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to use the White House’s immigration overhaul framework as the legislative vehicle he introduces during a coming floor debate on the issue.
“Nearly seven in 10 Americans support an immigration reform package that includes a permanent solution on [the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program], secures the border, ends chain migration, and cancels the visa lottery. These are the four pillars of the White House framework — a plan that will finally bring our immigration system into the 21st century,” Trump will say at the GOP retreat in West Virginia, according to excerpts of his speech released by the White House.
“I know that the Senate is planning to bring an immigration bill to the floor in the coming weeks, and I am asking today that the framework we submitted be the bill that the Senate votes on,” the president will tell Republicans.
“The president’s made a good faith offer, and I think Democrats so far have rejected it,” Senate Republican Conference Chairman John Thune of South Dakota said before the president arrived at the GOP retreat at the Greenbier resort in West Virginia. “But I really do feel like that could end up perhaps being a base bill in the Senate. I mean, we’ll see. I don’t know. I don’t think the leader has made any of those decisions.”
Trump’s call might work at odds with a bipartisan group that is readying a separate overhaul measure for the coming floor debate.
Should the White House measure pass the Senate, it is unclear if it would also pass the House given conservative GOP opposition. Those members feel it is not stringent enough; they are demanding floor votes on a conservative alternative from the House Judiciary Committee’s leaders.
Lindsey McPherson contributed to this report.