The federal government is set to shutdown, yet again…. (More)
“It’s time we end the gridlock”
Last month’s short-term funding bill expires on Friday, so it’s time for yet another round of GOP hostage-taking. Or maybe not:
Two senators eager to see Congress start crossing items off its long to-do list are set to introduce a bipartisan plan Monday designed to settle two of the more pressing parts of the immigration debate and let lawmakers move on to other issues.
Sens. John McCain (R-AZ) and Christopher A. Coons (D-DE) plan to formally introduce a bill that would grant permanent legal status to immigrant “dreamers” and start bolstering security along the U.S.-Mexico border. But the measure would not call for spending the $30 billion President Trump is seeking to fortify the border with new wall and fence construction.
And the McCain-Coons plan would grant legal status to dreamers who have been in the country since 2013 — a larger pool of immigrants than the 1.8 million Trump supports legalizing.
The bill says nothing about curbing family-based legal migration or making changes to the diversity lottery program — two other priorities for Trump and conservative Republicans.
The bill’s cosponsors say it’s time to quit bickering and make a deal:
“While reaching a deal cannot come soon enough for America’s service members, the current political reality demands bipartisan cooperation to address the impending expiration of the DACA program and secure the southern border,” McCain said in a statement ahead of Monday’s formal release.
He added that the bill “would address the most urgent priorities” of legalizing the status of dreamers and make changes to border security — and allow Congress to move on.
“It’s time we end the gridlock so we can quickly move on to completing a long-term budget agreement that provides our men and women in uniform the support they deserve,” McCain said.
Coons added that the bill “doesn’t solve every immigration issue, but it does address the two most pressing problems we face: protecting DACA recipients and securing the border.”
Needless to say, wingnuts are outraged:
Senator McCain seems determined to make the end of his Senate career into an ongoing demonstration of why Trump won. This isn’t even the fig leaf that Ryan and Rubio might have offered. It’s a joke.
Here’s a counterproposal, how about we get the wall now and then we can commission a study to figure out exactly what we’re going to do with the illegal aliens? Somehow Republicans never get around to proposing that one. Yet they expect the base to sit still for a proposal that not even Schumer would have proposed.
Once again, Republicans are caving to Democrats and refusing to fight for a key element in controlling the border. Makes a voter wonder why bother to vote at all, yes?
The idea, ostensibly, is that Republicans and Democrats want to fund the government and avoid another shut-down scenario, as The Hill noted. But let’s remember: The wall – or at least a fence, which some argue is one and the same as a wall – has already been approved. Back in 2006, Congress passed the Secure Fence Act, signed into law by then-President George W. Bush. It was never funded. But the border protection is both old and constitutionally rubber-stamped.
Conversely, creating a pathway to citizen for the so-called “Dreamers” is the newer matter — and one that was never legislatively approved. DACA was a dream of the Barack Obama White House, a solo executive act and a loud smack in the face of good constitutional governance.
Far from “a dream of the Barack Obama White House,” the DREAM Act was first proposed in 2001, during the Bush administration. And Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell promised a floor vote on a DACA bill during the last shutdown. So the DACA idea is actually older than the border protection idea and – if Congress pass it – it would be every bit as “constitutionally rubber-stamped.”
More’s the point, the 2006 Secure Fence Act was ultimately used to fund 650 miles of walls, fences, and sensor grids and more Mexican immigrants are leaving the U.S. than are arriving. And that’s been the case since at least 2007. In terms of immigration, the God-King’s precious wall is a classic example of “a solution in search of a problem.”
But that pattern is common for conservative policies, e.g.: voter ID laws. More accurately, conservatives steadfastly refuse to declare the actual ‘problem’ they intent to solve. With voter ID laws, the ‘problem’ is that too many Democrats vote. Thus the GOP’s ‘election protection’ laws target Democratic voters with “near surgical precision.”
With immigration, the ‘problem’ is that, by 2044, non-Hispanic whites will be a minority of the U.S. population. The God-King’s precious wall won’t stop that but – coupled with harsher deportation policies – it would move the GOP toward more toward the open white supremacy of the God-King’s base and validates the wingnut myth of “white genocide” as part of the mainstream political dialogue.
The McCain-Coons bill makes sense in terms of fact-based problems and solutions. But the God-King and his base are dealing in white supremacist conspiracy theories. I guess we’ll see which wins out by Friday….
Photo Credit: Brian Snyder (Reuters)
Good day and good nuts