Conservatives in the Senate appear to be concerned that their GOP counterparts in the House aren't likely to support any legislative solutions over the course of the next two years, The Washington Post reported Monday.
It's the last few weeks of the legislative session and Republicans in the House have begun listing off their top priorities for 2023, which seem exclusively dedicated to holding hearings about Hunter Biden, COVID-19 conspiracy theories, the 2020 election conspiracy, the impeachment of Joe Biden, a hearing investigating the Jan. 6 investigation, and a growing list of other issues.
It's the 11th-hour, The Post acknowledged, but Senators are trying to come up with a bipartisan bill that can help "Dreamers," extend Title 42 for another year until new "regional processing centers" can be provided, and another bill that will work on a pathway to citizenship for some undocumented farmworkers.
"Sens. Michael F. Bennet (D-CO) and Mike Crapo (R-ID) ...have not reached a deal yet but are hoping to get to one before the end of the lame duck session in December, according to a person familiar with the negotiations who, like others in the story, spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe the situation candidly.
There is a concern that a federal judge could end Barack Obama's program that helped protect "Dreamers" from being deported. They're the children who were brought to the U.S. by their parents when they were very young, were educated in the United States and don't know their home of origin. There are about 2 million Dreamers that face the issue and the conservatives working on the bill would also allocate money for border security, hiring more officers and pay raises for Border Patrol agents. The Congress has allocated funding to hire more agents over the course of the past several years, but they've had a difficult time recruiting and retaining people, NPR reported in 2019.
The Post reported that two sources close to conservatives say that they've yet to whip the Senate to see if their bill would pass. Senators are skeptical that the House GOP would be willing to make a deal on immigration since they failed to do it in 2018 due to the right wing of the party.
"Half a dozen Republican members have privately expressed the need for farmworkers to fill jobs in their rural communities, but know that even that bipartisan measure will probably face a blockade by staunch conservatives," recalled The Post.
Meanwhile, the House has two immigration bills they're set to vote on this week, but neither is expected to be taken up in the Senate.
Some House Republicans are trying to find Democrats that they can work with to come to some kind of solution.
“I’m looking for partners, and it’s been very difficult in this political environment to find partners that want to have a real conversation. But we’re still able to do it,” said Rep. Tony Gonzales (R-TX) before referring to the Bipartisan Border Solutions Act he worked on with home-state colleague Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-TX).