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Trump holds the line on immigration as bipartisan plan emerges

Trump holds the line on immigration as bipartisan plan emerges

USA president Donald Trump on Wednesday came out in support of an immigration bill introduced by Republican Senator Chuck Grassley, saying the draft supports the four pillars of his immigration framework.

Trump has said he won't sign immigration legislation unless it addresses "four pillars": legal protections for DREAMers; money for border security and a wall; changes to family-based or "chain" migration; and an end to the diversity visa lottery program.

"Democrats and republicans are laboring to find a bill to protect the dreamers and provide border security", Schumer said.

As fragile talks continued in the Senate in a bid to secure agreement on an immigration Bill by the end of this week, Mr Trump insisted that all "four pillars" of the White House's demands on immigration be met in the forthcoming legislation. Jeff Flake of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of SC are keen on securing protection - though not necessarily immediate citizenship - for Dreamers, along with funding for a border wall and an end to the diversity visa lottery, which aims to bring immigrants to the USA from underrepresented countries and is a particular bĂȘte noire of conservatives.

The two had worked for months with other lawmakers in a bipartisan fashion to put together a measure that provided a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S.as children, enhanced border security measures and contained the president's appropriations request for a border wall.

DACA is set to expire on March 5 but a federal injunction likely extends the program beyond that date. "That means fixing broken parts of our legal immigration system", McConnell said.

"Yes, it's going to happen right here - stay tuned", Illinois Democratic Senator Dick Durbin said in a recent floor speech. Susan Collins, R-Maine, appeared on the verge of a breakthrough on a rival strategy.

In another statement, the White House said it opposes the McCain-Coons plan. And other more-conservative members of Congress have pushed for more-stringent cuts to legal immigration, bringing Trump and the White House largely on board.

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The proposal, rolled out Monday, did not attract Democratic support. He and Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer have said they want to wrap up immigration legislation this week, though some senators have expressed doubts over whether the chamber can meet that deadline.

"This is a process that helps move us toward a merit based immigration system", Grassley said of his bill.

Democrats say they are open to a smaller deal, legal status for DACA recipients, also known as Dreamers and beefing up USA borders.

"The diversity lottery is kind of toxic politically because of some of the things said by the president", said Graham, a reference to a vulgar description Trump used for African countries during a discussion of immigration.

"Eliminating family based migration, which has been a hallmark of the U.S. since our inception and another concern is detaining and deporting individuals", said Curtright.

In the House, Speaker Paul Ryan is taking fire from some in his rank-and-file who want a broader bill that can better enable a crackdown on border crossings and employers who hire undocumented immigrants.

"There are a lot of different groups, as you know - some of them bipartisan, some of them Republicans only - discussing the way forward", Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told reporters at a press conference last Tuesday.


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