Bipartisan lawmakers push DACA, immigration deal

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WASHINGTON (Gray DC) -- The fate of hundreds of thousands of immigrants who came to the country as children hangs in the balance on Capitol Hill.

Without a budget deal this week, the federal government shuts down. Debate over the future of immigrants and border security are politically tied into those negotiations, further complicating talks.

"I don't think any of us want a shutdown but all of us want a solution," said Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.).

The arguments don't necessarily break along party lines. This group of lawmakers -- including Vermont's Peter Welch on the left and Texas Congressman Will Hurd on the right -- thinks it has the solution.

"It's time that we secure our border and that's what our bill does and it solves the problem for the 1.2 million kids that have only known the United States of America as their home," said Hurd.

The proposal would protect DACA -- the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program - which could expire soon. The Obama administration first offered that protection but President Trump says Congress should be the one who decides whether this should continue. Hurd's plan extends it in exchange for beefed up border security - an agreement these lawmakers can live with.

"Republicans and Democrats can actually work together on big issues," said Hurd.

So far, the deal has support of 20 Democrats and 20 Republicans in the House. But not everyone on the left or the right is on board.

"I mean that is simply unacceptable, so proposals such as Congressman Hurd's simply fall far short of the mark," said R.J. Hauman, the Federation for American Immigration Reform government relations director.

Hauman says if the Republicans don't fight for a wall and other key features of GOP campaign promises, they're back pedaling from what they promised.

Congress has until Friday to make a deal or delay the debate again, as it did just a month ago.



 
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