Bipartisan duo makes last-minute push for immigration deal

Sens. Krysten Sinema and Thom Tillis are working on an immigration reform framework that includes protections for "dreamers" and new border security funds.

WASHINGTON — The bipartisan Senate duo launched an emergency push to pass immigration reform before the year ends.

Sens. According to a Senate aide, Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) and Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), have been discussing with colleagues what they call a “draft framework”. It includes $25 billion to increase border security in return for citizenship for approximately 2 million “Dreamers,” undocumented young immigrants who were brought to America by their parents.

Sources said that the framework is still in flux. It also calls for the extension of Title 42 for at most one year, until the creation “regional processing centres” along the border. These centers would have increased staffing and resources to accommodate asylum seekers. Title 42, a Trump-era Covid policy, allowed authorities to limit asylum-seekers’ ability to cross the border into the U.S.

Nov. 16, 202202:55

The framework, first reported by the Washington Post would accelerate the asylum process through investments in asylum officers and litigation teams, as well as immigration judges and courts. Additional investments are also made in removal operations for those who have absconded from or received final removal orders.

According to the proposal, the increase in border security would mean higher salaries for border agents and more resources for border protection and patrol.

Congress would have to pass any immigration bill during the post-election lame duck session. It has a long laundry list of issues to address in the coming weeks, and the lawmakers have not made significant progress on this politically difficult issue in decades.

Both Sinema, and Tillis are moderates with a history of legislative victories. Both Sinema and Tillis, moderates, have a track record of legislative wins.

The Senate aide stated that they had found a winning formula.

If they are able to reach a compromise, members of pro-immigration reform hope to attach their proposal as part of a bill that will keep the government funding. This bill must be passed later in the month.

“As the Dream Act’s author, I appreciate every effort to provide these individuals with a pathway to citizenship. I have been in touch with my colleagues and will carefully examine their proposal,” Senator Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), tweeted Monday.

“I am determined to deliver a Christmas Miracle to Dreamers”

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