The Senate Parliamentarian denied the Senate Democrats’ bid to include immigration measures in the $3.5 trillion budget bill. This is a big blow to President Joe Biden’s efforts to implement an ambitious spending program.
In addition, the decision closes the door to a possible pathway to citizenship in the bill.
MacDonough Rejects Bid to Include Immigration Measures
Senate parliamentarian Elizabeth MacDonough ruled against the Democrats’ attempts. They tried to include immigration measures in their proposed $3.5 trillion bill.
Previous to the parliamentarian’s decision, Democrats and Republicans are at odds. Democrats wanted to add the cost of Biden’s immigration programs as the bill is the only one that can afford it. They estimated the cost to provide citizenship to 8 million people at $139 billion.
In addition, this also allows the Democrats to avoid any Republican opposition. Given the 50-50 deadlock in the Senate, immigration measures won’t stand a chance for getting 60% of the votes.
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Democrats Already Warned About The Outcome
Meanwhile, MacDonough’s predecessor warned Senate Majority leader Chuck Schumer (NY) of the outcome. However, Schumer and his group ignored the warning and still included it in the spending bill’s various programs.
Schumer expressed disappointment in the result. He also said the party will continue exploring new ways to get funding.
“Despite putting their lives on the line during the pandemic and paying their fair share of taxes, they remain locked out of the federal assistance that served as a lifeline for so many families.
We will continue fighting to pursue the best path forward to grant them the ability to obtain lawful status,” Schumer said in a statement.
Immigration Measures Do Not Have A Direct Budgetary Impact
Earlier, the Senate Parliamentarian challenged the Democrats. In particular, she asked them to prove that immigration will have a direct budgetary impact.
This is the only way for the measures to get approval for inclusion. However, the Democrats weren’t able to do so. As a result, the parliamentarian removed the immigration measures from the bill.
Apart from Schumer, Senate Majority Dick Durbin (IL) and Senator Alex Padilla (CA) promised to continue the fight. “We are deeply disappointed in the Parliamentarian’s decision, but the fight for immigration reform will continue,” they said in a joint statement..”Senate Democrats have prepared an alternative proposal for the Parliamentarian’s consideration in the coming days,” they added.
Can’t Be Measured in Dollars
In giving her citing for rejecting the bid, MacDonough said such an immigration policy change is too big. Specifically, she said that policy far outweighs “the budgetary impact scored to it and it is not appropriate for inclusion in reconciliation.”
In addition, MacDonought noted the actual impact remains disconnected from the budget. “The reasons that people risk their lives to come to this country – to escape religious and political persecution, famine, war, unspeakable violence, and lack of opportunity in their home countries – cannot be measured in federal dollars,” MacDonough said in her ruling.
Democrats Said Immigration Measures Will Cost $139 Billion And Earn $150 billion
In their arguments. Democrats said the cost to provide 8 million with citizenship is $139 billion. However, they also said this could add $150 billion in spending to the US economy annually.
In addition, Democrats said it could grow the nation’s gross domestic product by $1.5 trillion over the next decade.
Watch the WAHJOC World video reporting that the Senate parliamentarian deals blow to Dems’ immigration push:
Do you agree with the Senate Parliamentarian’s decision that Democrats can add immigration measures to a $3.5 trillion spending program? Why are the Democrats so insistent on getting this program passed?
Let us know what you think. Share your comments in the comments section below.