A bipartisan group of senators has introduced legislation to address the surge of migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border. The bill aims to provide a solution to the border crisis, which Republicans had insisted on in exchange for more U.S. aid to Ukraine. Senate leaders are planning to hold a procedural vote on the bill, and Republicans will have to decide whether to allow debate on the legislation or filibuster it.
The proposed legislation would expand the government's authority to expel migrants, restrict claims for parole, and raise the standard for those seeking asylum. It would also close the border if illegal crossings reach or surpass a certain daily threshold. President Joe Biden has expressed support for the bill, stating that if it were law today, he would shut down the border and quickly address the issue.
Biden's stance on the bill has drawn criticism from Latino Democrats and the progressive wing of his party, who argue that restrictive measures won't solve the crisis. On the other hand, conservatives in the House and Senate have strongly opposed the bipartisan agreement, with former President Donald Trump urging Republicans to reject it.
Some Republicans have openly admitted that they don't want to pass the bill and give Biden a victory that could benefit Democrats in the upcoming election. The bill will need at least 60 votes to advance in the Senate and will require additional GOP support to overcome opposition in the House.
Despite the criticism and opposition, senators involved in crafting the legislation, such as Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, believe it is a significant opportunity to address the border crisis and make necessary concessions on border policy. However, House Speaker Mike Johnson has announced his plan to vote on a standalone Israel foreign aid bill, separate from the bipartisan package, in an attempt to pressure Republicans in the Senate and jam pro-Israel Democrats.
As the bill moves forward, its fate remains uncertain. It will require bipartisan support and compromise to pass both chambers of Congress and address the ongoing border crisis.