WASHINGTON — House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Democrats are still unwilling to leave for the holidays without a DACA fix, declaring today that “we’re not going to turn this country into a reign of terror of domestic enforcement …and have the DREAMers pay that price.”
Thirty-four House Republicans sent a letter Tuesday to House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) calling for a solution to save 800,000 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals beneficiaries from deportation before the end of the year.
Pelosi said at her weekly press conference today that a DACA agreement is one of Democrats’ priorities, but “Democrats are not willing to shut the government down — no.”
“We’ve said to the president the night he agreed to the DACA legislation that we have a responsibility to protect our border, and we find — think are many things we can do working together to do that. And members have been working in a bipartisan way to address that,” she said later. “So we’re not backing off anything, including meeting the needs of protecting our border.”
Pelosi stressed she’s “optimistic” on a DACA fix, because “God is with us on this.”
“Our country is great. We know that greatness springs from the vitality that newcomers bring to our country. Eighty percent, at least, of the American people support the DREAMers, and some members, at the president’s holiday event the other night … Republican members were saying to me, ‘This is 80 percent in my district, people support the DREAMers.’ And I’ve had some of their spouses say to me, ‘We have to — we have to get the DREAM Act,'” she continued. “So this has, again, bipartisan support. We can find our common ground.”
Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-Texas) said Tuesday that he doesn’t see a need to get in a DACA fix before the end of the year. “There’s no negative action that occurs for any DACA recipient before March of next year,” he said. “And we have a couple of months in January and February to figure this out, if they’re willing to meet us halfway and negotiate in good faith.”
Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said on the Senate floor this morning that “Democrats support real border security and will happily join with Republicans to pass legislation to secure our border in exchange for the DREAM Act.”
“Those talks continue to make progress, and I hope we can reach an agreement soon,” he said.
Schumer and Pelosi were scheduled to meet with President Trump this afternoon.
Talks have hit a roadblock in recent days over whether or not DREAMers would have a path to citizenship.