Trump's message to Republicans on immigration: Compromise or win in 2018

Trump's message to Republicans on immigration: Compromise or win in 2018

"We'll either have something that's fair and equitable and good and secure, or we're going to have nothing at all", he said.

The push to reach some sort of consensus on immigration was put on the front burner by Trump's decision to cancel the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, which is shielding 690,000 young immigrants from deportation, by early March.

The flood of low-skilled immigrants into the U.S. has suppressed wages, harmed American workers and strained federal resources, the White House said, a day after President Donald Trump called for a merit-based immigration system that could benefit Indian professionals.

The issue is also tied up in a long-running standoff between Republicans and Democrats over federal spending levels, with Democrats threatening to block appropriations bills until immigration is addressed.

Congressional Republicans have gathered at a West Virginia resort in search of a winning election-year agenda, facing the notion that the best they have to offer in 2018 may be a recitation of the tax cuts approved in 2017.

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"Instead of lifting up the shared humanity of all those who aspire to be full and equal members of the American family, he (Trump) sneered that Americans are dreamers, too, a not-too-subtle swipe at young immigrants whose lives were plunged into crisis by his decision to end DACA", said Frank Sharry, executive director of America's Voice, a non-governmental organization that advocates a direct path to USA citizenship for illegal immigrants. And while there was no formal immigration session on the agenda, Lankford and other lawmakers said the issue has come up frequently in informal talks among lawmakers.

Last month, he proposed letting 1.8 million Dreamers stay in the country and become citizens in exchange for $25 billion for the wall, curbs on family-sponsored immigration, and an end to a visa lottery programme.

"A merit-based system would properly match the needs of the modern United States economy and protect vulnerable blue- collar American workers", the White House said. He also reiterated the need for new roads and immigration reform.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell promised that wouldn't happen, saying, "There's no education in the second kick of a mule".

In his speech, in which he did not mention any benefits of immigration for a country often described as a "nation of immigrants", the president listed demands for security measures that include restricting one longtime visa program and ending another.

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Many Democrats have slammed Trump's framework.

"If we win more, we don't have to compromise so much", he added.

Sanford noted that more than 30 House Republicans have now chose to retire, run for other office or outright resign amid controversy - hardly a resounding vote of confidence in the Trump administration. It's the thing that's dividing Republicans and Democrats. Democrats have blasted the plan and called it dead on arrival.

Regardless, factions in the House and Senate continue to discuss a deal, the Post reported.

But then the hardliners in the House GOP and in the White House began to make their own pitch for a broader and more conservative deal.

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