Richard Durbin dismisses overruling Senate parliamentarian on amnesty in Biden spending plan
Senate Majority Whip Richard Durbin dismissed the possibility of Democrats overturning a ruling that prevents an immigration amnesty being included in President Biden’s $3.5 trillion expansion of the federal safety net.
Mr. Durbin , Illinois Democrat said Monday that any attempt at changing the rules of the chamber to allow for a pathway to citizenship based on party lines would fail.
I don’t think that’s possible,” Mr. Durbin stated. “I don’t think that the votes are needed .”
Democrats originally hoped for a pathway to citizenship in Mr. Biden’s $3.5 trillion welfare bill. Party leaders are currently preparing to pass it via budget reconciliation.
The process allows spending and tax measures to avoid the 60-vote filibuster threshold and pass with a simple 51-vote majority.
Elizabeth MacDonough (the Parliamentarian who decides what can be included in a budget reconciliation bill) rejected the idea. In a Sunday ruling, Mrs. MacDonough rejected the Democratic argument that amnesty should be part of the reconciliation process.
Democrats claimed that an amnesty would result in hundreds of billions in government revenue and benefits over a number of decades. This meant it should be considered a budget-friendly measure.
Ms. MacDonough disagreed and said that granting citizenship to anyone by “any standard” was an “immigration policy” rather than a budgetary measure.
“The policy changes in this proposal far outweigh its budgetary impact and it is not suitable for inclusion in reconciliation,” she wrote.
The parliamentarian’s decision was quickly criticized by far-left Democrats, including members from the “Squad .”
Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer. Many have asked for Majority leader Charles E. Schumer either to fire Ms. MacDonough, or to hold a vote overturning her decision.
This ruling by the parliamentarian was only a recommendation. @SenSchumer, the @WhiteHouse could and should ignore it,” Rep. Ilhanomar, Minnesota Democrat, stated on Twitter. We cannot miss this unique opportunity to do right.
Officially, the can elect to reverse a reconciliation decision made by the parliamentarian. To make such an effort successful, a simple majority is required of the Senate .
At the moment, Democrats have 50 seats and the tie-breaking vote by Vice President Kamala Harris.
Despite the majority, Mr. Durbin stated that it was unrealistic to expect every Democrat to support a motion to remove the parliamentarian.
” I hope I’m wrong but I don’t believe that this is a realistic approach at the moment,” he stated. This report was contributed by
Kery Murphy and Stephen Dinan.