Common Ground: Immigration Reform

02/19/2018 05:57 PM

Immigration—it’s a topic that’s been discussed vehemently over the past year. It’s also something that both sides of the aisle agree needs to be reformed.

In hopes of bipartisanship, the U.S. Senate set aside the week of February 12 to hold an open debate on immigration reform, which was meant to forge a bipartisan agreement. Both Democrats and Republicans agree something needs to be done with the 1.8 million “Dreamers” —the children who were brought to the country illegally by their parents. Both sides also agreed to discuss border security.

Early in the week, while Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-New York, was in town along side Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, he spoke optimistically about reaching an agreement on immigration.

“Senator McConnell to his credit has promised an open process, that’s fair to both sides. Democrats and Republicans are laboring to find a bill to protect the Dreamers and provide border security, and garner 60 votes. It won’t be easy, but we are all going to try because of the issues at stake.” said Senator Schumer.

And easy it wasn’t. In fact, the bipartisan agreement on immigration reform ended pretty much the same day Senator Schumer appeared at the University of Louisville. By the end of the week, talks had broken down and four different proposals on immigration reform failed to get enough votes.

And predictably—both sides blamed the other.

“I thought we may be able to resolve this, I was hoping we could reach a bipartisan solution, that could pass the Senate, pass the House, and earn President Trump’s signature, but once again when the hour came to actually make law, instead of just making political points, our friends across the aisle were either unable or unwilling to get something done. After all the talk, they hardly came to the table at all.” Senator McConnell said after the talks broke down.

So where does that leave the talks on immigration? Congress left Washington D.C. after the immigration defeat for a week break. When they return the week of February 26, they will have just one week to forge some sort of an agreement before DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) ends March 5.

While courts have ruled that President Trump can’t actually take away the protection from the around 700,000 people currently covered under it. Many in Congress still hope to reach an agreement at the beginning of March, instead of continuing the uncertainty that many DACA recipients are currently facing. But after the failure to reach an agreement in the Senate—it faces an even tougher road in the extremely fractured.

Watch the Segment:

Michon Lindstrom

Michon is a producer for Pure Politics. Michon comes to Kentucky from Springfield, Illinois where she served as the statehouse reporter for the NBC affiliate. During her time in the Land of Lincoln she covered the state’s two year budget impasse and the largest school funding overall in Illinois history. Pure Politics airs weeknights at 7 and 11:30 on Spectrum News. Follow Michon on Twitter at @MichonLindstrom or reach her by email at


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