Four Days Until Next Shutdown Deadline
This week, Congress is scrambling to find common-ground on immigration policy, with the issue representing a sticking point in budget negotiations. Democrats have indicated that a failure to address the issue will result in a lack of Democratic support for any proposed budget measure.
The disagreement has represented a consistent point of disagreement for Republicans and Democrats, with Democrats insisting Republicans take steps to address the roughly 800,000 immigrants affected by President Donald Trump’s decision to rescind the Obama Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
With only four days remaining before the government’s funding runs out – a prospect that would mean a government shutdown, in the event Congress fails to pass another funding measure – the debate is a weighty and time-sensitive one.
The debate in recent months has been further complicated by President Trump’s insistence that his proposed border wall – an important component of his campaign platform – receive funding from Congress. However, in recent weeks, some signs have pointed to a willingness to consider alternative plans, including a scheduled (and subsequently canceled) White House meeting with Democrat leaders from the House and Senate.
A bipartisan group of Senators announced late last week that they had struck a deal on a DACA fix, but it remains unclear whether the group – led by Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) – will have its ideas taken up by the broader parties of its constituent members. And President Trump’s tweets on the subject over the past 24 hours have indicated he has not yet seen a DACA compromise he will support.
As highlighted by the Associated Press, other issues complicating the time-sensitive negotiations are disagreements on stopgap spending – with Democrats indicating they are decreasingly likely to support yet another short-term funding measure – higher budget caps on both military and domestic spending, continued delays to an $81 billion disaster relief package, and a possible multi-year extension of the Children’s Health Insurance Program, an issue made more dire by the fact that “several states are at risk of running out of CHIP money soon.”
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