As the dreaded federal government shutdown nears reality, there is no indication yet of an immigration deal, a key component to securing Senate Democrats’ votes to support the passage of the stop-gap continuing resolution.
The funding bill has passed through the House of Representatives, but if no immigration deal is struck by midnight, Senate Democrats might not vote for the resolution, which would lead to the shutdown. And, even after a meeting between Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Trump, no compromise has yet been reached.
March 5 will mark the official end of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) if no legislative solution can be found. After that date, an estimated 7,000-10,000 young people will lose their legal authorization each week to be in the United States as their work permits expire. Meanwhile, the recent terminations of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for El Salvador, Haiti, Nicaragua, and Sudan only add to the void of lost legal status and crushing anxiety for thousands upon thousands of immigrants.
Leveraging the continuing resolution seemed to be one of the few ways to actually get Congress to act on passing immigration reform. And, with the deadline just hours away, it remains uncertain if Senate Democrats will risk a shutdown to force an immigration bill through.
What is clear is that our country’s lawmakers have a duty to protect Americans, regardless of their status. As the whirlwind of negotiations settles, if no deal is struck, both immigrants and American citizens will suffer the consequences of the continuing mass deportation agenda.