Senate immigration deal in danger of collapsing

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WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) – Presidential politics could kill an immigration deal in Congress. Senate negotiators are working on a border package, but former President Donald Trump’s opposition to the plan is complicating it.

Senate Democrats and Republicans have been working with the White House for months to try to strike a border reform deal.

“The immigration system is broken and it has been for decades now,” White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said.

Negotiators say they’re almost done, but now the deal is in danger of collapsing.

Former President Donald Trump has been vocally criticizing their work. His political pressure could influence lawmakers’ support.

Senator Mitt Romney (R-Utah) accuses Trump of playing politics.

“Former President Trump has indicated to senators that he does not want us to solve the problem at the border,” Romney said. “That he doesn’t want us to solve the border problem because he wants to blame Biden for it, is really appalling.”

The White House is making an appeal to the other party.

“House Republicans have to choose, do they want to help or do they want to score political points?” Jean-Pierre said.

But many Republicans are taking Trump’s side.

On Friday, House Speaker Mike Johnson sent a letter to his colleagues saying, ‘If rumors about the contents of the draft proposal are true, it would have been dead on arrival in the House anyway.’

While the details of the deal aren’t public yet, Senator J.D. Vance (R-Ohio) says from what he does know he doesn’t like it.

“Frankly I’m not too happy with the package,” Vance said.

The lawmakers leading negotiations say the deal isn’t dead yet though. Before leaving for the weekend Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) gave a hopeful update.

“We know how important this is. We are negotiating in good faith. And want to get this done in a bipartisan way,” Schumer said.

The White House also expressed optimism that lawmakers can still reach a compromise.

“There has been progress in their conversations,” Jean-Pierre said.

If the package does fail to pass, Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) says President Biden should take steps to crack down on the border himself.

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