Sep 6, 2017

Protecting the Dreamers faces uphill battle in Congress

Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals

(Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP)

A number of congressional Republicans said Tuesday they want to pass some kind of legislation protecting Dreamers currently protected by DACA.

  • Many members and aides are in agreement that, to pass in the House, a fix would also likely have to include other immigration reform measures.
  • The problem is members have very different ideas about what that means.
  • And that's exactly why it's unlikely anything happens, one House leadership aide told me. "We've been thru this before. We try to do something and it's always too much or not enough. Very goldilocks and the bears."

It's not hard to see the aide's point. Take a look at what a small sampling of Republicans alone are saying — and this isn't even taking into account Senate Democrats:

Sen. Susan Collins, a key Senate moderate: "The question is whether the DACA bill will be used as a vehicle for broader immigration reform, which I very much support our considering, but don't think we have time to do in the amount of time allotted."Mark Meadows, chairman of the House Freedom Caucus: "The minute you say comprehensive it's like nails on a chalkboard....I'm saying we need to move a package of bills that would actually individually deal with some aspects of immigration...I don't think you get any immigration bill across without securing our southern border. I would think wall money would be part of that."Mark Walker, chairman of the Republican Study Committee: "I think something more comprehensive might be in play. The House has both the leadership and we have the majorities in both the House and the Senate. I don't know that we should kick this can down the road. We should begin to look at something long-term."Yes, but: Sen. Jeff Flake makes an important case for why reform could succeed: "People say we've done this for 16 years, haven't been able to get it through, but now there's a program kids are protected by and they're going to lose that protection if we don't act. There's a difference there."

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Updates: George Floyd protests continue for 8th day

Police officers wearing riot gear push back demonstrators outside of the White House on Monday. Photo: Jose Luis Magana/AFP via Getty Images

Protests over the death of George Floyd and other police-related killings of black people continued Tuesday across the U.S. for the eighth consecutive day, prompting a federal response from the National Guard, Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Customs and Border Protection.

The latest: The National Park Service said in a statement Tuesday that while it "is committed to the peaceful expression of First Amendment rights," it "cannot tolerate violence to citizens or officers or damage to our nation’s resources that we are entrusted to protect."

American carnage

Protesters race up a hill to avoid tear gas in Philadelphia, June 1. Photo: Mark Makela/Getty Images

The list of victims has swiftly grown since George Floyd died in police custody just eight days ago.

The big picture: Protests against police brutality have turned into a showcase of police brutality, with tear gas and rubber bullets deployed against crowds. The police have the arsenals at their disposal, but we're also seeing law enforcement officers becoming targets.

McConnell blocks resolution condemning Trump's actions against peaceful protesters

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) blocked a resolution introduced by Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday that would have condemned the use of tear gas and rubber bullets against peaceful protesters outside the White House on Monday in order to allow President Trump to walk to St. John's Church.

What they're saying: "Justice for black Americans in the face of unjust violence, and peace for our country in the face of looting, riots, and domestic terror. Those are the two issues Americans want addressed," McConnell said on the Senate floor.