A bipartisan budget bill inched closer to becoming a reality on Thursday as House Speaker Paul Ryan promised to address immigration once the spending issue is settled and a government shutdown avoided.
Ryan (R-Wis.) vowed to vote on legislation to protect the young immigrants under the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, a day after top House Democrat Nancy Pelosi of California delivered a daylong speech on the House floor petitioning her opponents across the aisle.
Pelosi said shed oppose the budget deal unless GOP leaders agreed to hold a vote on helping the DACA recipients, called Dreamers.
I know there is a real commitment to solving the DACA challenge in both political parties. Thats a commitment that I share, Ryan said Thursday. To anyone who doubts my intention to solve this problem and bring up a DACA and immigration reform bill, do not. We will bring a solution to the floor, one the President will sign.
Pelosi, 77, spent more than eight hours, wearing 4-inch heels and not taking any breaks, reading personal letters from young immigrants and quoting Pope Francis and the Bible.
Ryan and other GOP leaders spent Thursday attempting to shore up support among conservatives for the budget plan that showers the Pentagon and domestic programs with an extra $300 billion over the next two years.
Pressure was on to pass a bill in order to prevent a government shutdown at midnight.
Its going to need bipartisan support. We are going to deliver our share of support, Ryan told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt Thursday morning. I feel very good about Republicans. Our members who are focused on the military are very happy where we landed with that.
The measure is a triumph for Republican allies of the Pentagon and for Democrats seeking more spending on infrastructure and fighting opioid abuse.
The agreement also adds $89 billion in disaster relief for hurricane-ravaged Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.
It funds a slew of domestic programs favored by Democrats and increases the governments borrowing cap.
Lawmakers were hoping to avoid the second shutdown in as many months as President Trump stood on the sidelines, saying Tuesday he would rather have Washington come to a close if Democrats don’t accept his hardline immigration proposals.
While the bill appeals to many, some fiscal conservatives expressed fear about how the bill will bloat the deficit down the road.
I love bipartisanship, as you know, said Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz). But the problem is the only time we discover bipartisanship is when we spend more money.