Sen. Durbin Co-Sponsored Plan To Protect Dreamers — Now That Trump Wants It, He’s Against It

Virginia Kruta Associate Editor
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Democratic Illinois Senator Dick Durbin came out against the border security proposal announced by President Donald Trump on Saturday, publishing a statement before the president even delivered his remarks.

In his statement, the Senate Minority Whip explained that he could not accept the deal Trump offered. “I cannot support the proposed offer as reported, and I do not believe it can pass the Senate.”

The president’s plan included a three-year extension of legal protections for DACA recipients and those in Temporary Protected Status (TPS) — concessions that mirror those proposed in December 2016 in the bipartisan Bridge Act.

The Bridge Act was drafted to protect Dreamers after then President-elect Trump promised to tear up the Obama-era executive order that put DACA on the books in the first place.

Republican South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham, who co-sponsored the bill in 2016 and has said several times that Trump should consider offering DACA protections in exchange for the security measures he wants, told Politico why he supported the bill. (RELATED: Trump Deal? President Expected To Offer DACA Fix In Exchange For Wall Funding)

“In my view, the [executive action] issued by President Obama was unconstitutional and President-elect Trump would be right to repeal it,” he said. “However, I do not believe we should pull the rug out and push these young men and women — who came out of the shadows and registered with the federal government — back into the darkness.”

Graham’s co-sponsor on Bridge Act was the very same senator who announced Saturday he would reject a deal from the White House that included everything he asked for just over two years ago.

Durbin was not alone in his rejection of the president’s Saturday proposal. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi also issued a statement ahead of the announcement, saying that Trump’s proposal was not a “good faith effort” to bring about negotiations.

Despite objections from a number of Democrats, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is expected to bring the president’s proposal before the Senate in the next week.

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