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Senate Democrats are desperately searching for a way to weasel around the rules to be able to include a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants in the Build Back Better Act.
Thus far they’ve hit a brick wall after their third proposal was rejected by parliamentarian Elizabeth MacDonough last week.
But several Democrats have indicated that they would consider “any means necessary,” even if it meant ignoring or overruling the non-partisan parliamentarian’s advice to use the budget reconciliation process to pass the bill, which only requires a simple majority of 51 votes, instead of the traditional way that would require 60 votes.
“Every tool that exists whether it’s legislative or procedural should be kept on the table. …We need to pursue every option,” Sen. Ben Ray Lujan (D-N.M.) explained according to a report by the Hill.
Dems THIRD attempt to stuff amnesty in BBB bill rejected, scramble for ‘Plan D’ is on https://t.co/k1zUV5p7dh
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) December 18, 2021
According to Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), the left was “considering all the options legislatively, procedurally, administratively so, we’ll see.”
Several Senate Democrats issued a joint statement denouncing MacDonough’s advice against the measure that would have given about 6.5 million illegals temporary immigration parole.
“We strongly disagree with the Senate parliamentarian’s interpretation of our immigration proposal, and we will pursue every means to achieve a path to citizenship in the Build Back Better Act,” the statement from Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Sens. Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.), Ben Ray Luján (D-NM), Alex Padilla (D-Calif.) and Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) read.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) contends that MacDonough is flat out wrong and indicated that the immigration provisions “clearly met the threshold of budgetary impact” to be eligible for inclusion in the budget reconciliation bill.
“The parliamentarian was wrong, as a matter of law. The reconciliation bill has included immigration provisions multiple times in the past, and this bill clearly met the threshold of budgetary impact. …We’re keeping all options on the table,” Warren said.
Hawaii Sen. Mazie Hirono chimed in on Twitter to promote the immigration amnesty provisions, claiming it “cannot be halted due to the ADVICE of 1 person.”
Advice—that is the Senate Parliamentarian’s job.
The protection of millions of undocumented immigrants cannot be halted due to the ADVICE of 1 person.
All options must be on the table. We need to get this done.
— Senator Mazie Hirono (@maziehirono) December 17, 2021
The bill hasn’t been a crowd-pleaser with the American people either and a poll earlier this month showed that the majority of Americans did not support the massive spending package.
They tried to promote BBB as focused on children and families. Then Americans discovered what else was in it, and it started to lose support.
SALT, immigration…What else weren’t they telling Americans?
— Andrea E (@AAC0519) December 19, 2021
Regardless, Padilla predicted that the bill would be difficult to pass in the Senate without so-called immigration reform provisions.
“It’ll have a hard time passing the Senate if there’s not something on immigration,” Padilla said according to Bloomberg.
Not all Democrats are eager to sidestep the guidance by the parliamentarian including Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.)who have held the line on the Build Back Better Bill even as they have both endured ridicule and harassment from the far left advocates of the bill.
“You stick with the parliamentarian… on every issue. You can’t pick and choose,” Manchin explained.
Sinema indicated earlier this year, “there is no instance in which I would overrule a parliamentarian’s decision.”
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