A second GOP immigration compromise bill died in the House on Wednesday, ending a several month-long drama that wouldn’t have likely made it through the Senate even if it had passed.
Fewer votes were cast for the compromise bill than the more hardline measure rejected last week in a 193-231 vote. Just 114 Republicans backed it, with 34 having not yet voted.
The vote itself was postponed twice in order to give Republicans more time to drum up support for the measure which was sharply opposed by Democrats, and not expected to survive the Senate even if the House approved it.
Earlier Wednesday, Trump sent a very “boomer” all-caps Tweet urging House GOP to pass the measure.
HOUSE REPUBLICANS SHOULD PASS THE STRONG BUT FAIR IMMIGRATION BILL, KNOWN AS GOODLATTE II, IN THEIR AFTERNOON VOTE TODAY, EVEN THOUGH THE DEMS WON’T LET IT PASS IN THE SENATE. PASSAGE WILL SHOW THAT WE WANT STRONG BORDERS & SECURITY WHILE THE DEMS WANT OPEN BORDERS = CRIME. WIN!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 27, 2018
The compromise bill would have provided a pathway to citizenship for so-called Dreamers, the issue that led centrist Republicans to launch a discharge petition to force a series of votes on immigration.
Discharge petitions are a way of getting around the House leadership to force a vote, and are rarely used by members in the majority. Democrats backed those Republicans pushing the discharge petition to raise pressure on GOP leaders.
The decision to vote on the hardline immigration measure last week and the compromise bill on Wednesday were part of a deal within the GOP conference that effectively quashed the petition. –The Hill
The bill would have also set aside $25 billion for Trump’s border wall and other security measures, while ending the diversity visa lottery program and imposing limits on family-based migration. It would also prevent migrant families from being separated – however an Executive Order from last week already covered that base.
Several alternate bills are already in the works in the House, while competing efforts are underway in the Senate.
The biggest sticking point for conservatives opposed to the measure was a provision to include Dreamers – which several saw as a pathway to citizenship or amnesty.
“From the beginning, it’s been a tough, tough, tough road to get to anything that our members can agree on. Again, you have members in our conference that don’t want to do anything, whatever we do is amnesty,” one GOP aide told the Hill.
Sounds like immigration policy will largely flow from the West Wing for the foreseeable future.