WASHINGTON – As the longest partial government shutdown in history drags on, the Senate will move on a measure this week the White House hopes will bring all sides to the table.
Over the weekend, President Donald Trump offered to temporarily extend protections for young immigrants brought to the US illegally as children and those fleeing disaster zones in exchange for his border wall.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) plans to bring the president's proposal to a vote Tuesday, despite criticism from both the Left and the Right.
Some conservatives say Trump's offer to help the Dreamers amounts to amnesty. "Trump proposes amnesty. We voted for Trump and got Jeb!" commentator Ann Coulter tweeted.
Trump proposes amnesty. We voted for Trump and got Jeb!
— Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) January 19, 2019
Vice President Mike Pence defended the president's plan allowing for three years of protection for some 700,000 DACA recipients.
"This is not amnesty. There's no pathway to citizenship," Pence told "Fox News Sunday." "What this is, is a good faith effort."
That effort, unveiled by Trump Saturday, includes the following:
- $5.7 billion for barriers along parts of the southern border;
- Funding for technology to the protect ports of entry;
- Funding for additional immigration judges;
- A 3-year extension for Temporary Protected Status (TPS).
"This is a common-sense compromise both parties should embrace," Trump said during his speech Saturday.
The vice president calls the measure a bipartisan effort that was based on talks with Democrats.
"What the president presented really is an effort to bring together ideas from both political parties. I think it is an act of statesmanship on the president's part," Pence told CBS' "Face the Nation."
But Democrats want a permanent solution for Dreamers.
"He's the one that got rid of DACA in the first place," Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) said of President Trump.
Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) agreed: "It was effectively saying, 'I created a problem by taking away protections for Dreamers; I'm willing to undo part of the damage, temporarily, that I have inflicted,'" he said.
While several Republicans say they're on board with the proposal, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) called the plan dead on arrival.
"@realDonaldTrump, 800,000 Americans are going without pay. Re-open the government, let workers get their paychecks and then we can discuss how we can come together to protect the border. #EndTheShutdown," the California Democrat tweeted Sunday.
Democrats plan to counter with $1 billion in border funding. They'll also propose legislation this week that would offer support for 800,000 federal workers who aren't getting paid.
Meanwhile, the Transportation Security Administration says a record 8 percent of its agents are calling out sick, bringing long lines at airports and growing concerns about safety.