Democrats are vowing to move forward with immigration reform if presumptive nominee Joe Biden is…

Democrats are vowing to move forward with immigration reform if presumptive nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenDavis: Supreme Court decision is bad news for Trump, good news for VanceTeachers face off against Trump on school reopeningsBiden wins Puerto Rico primaryMORE is elected president and the party also takes back the Senate in this falls elections.
The prospect would set up a bruising battle in Congress next year, one that Democrats shied away from in 2009 and 2010, after Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaTrump defends golf outings: It’s my ‘exercise’How Trump can get his mojo backTrump confirms 2018 US cyberattack on Russian troll farmMORE won the presidency in 2008 and Democrats expanded their Senate majority and controlled the House.  
It also underscores the stakes for the 2020 election. Polls show that Biden has built a lead nationally and in swing states, and Democrats increasingly like their chances of winning back the Senate majority.
Sen. Bob MenendezRobert (Bob) MenendezKoch-backed group urges Senate to oppose ‘bailouts’ of states in new adsThomas Kean wins GOP primary to take on Rep. Tom MalinowskiTrump administration moves to formally withdraw US from WHOMORE (D-N.J.) said immigration reform legislation should be at the front of the Democratic to-do list should control of the Senate flip, while Senate Democratic Whip Dick DurbinRichard (Dick) Joseph DurbinGOP senators voice confidence over uphill Senate battleFinger-pointing, gridlock spark frustration in SenateHillicon Valley: Facebook takes down ‘boogaloo’ network after pressure | Election security measure pulled from Senate bill | FCC officially designating Huawei, ZTE as threatsMORE (Ill.) was more definitive.
Durbin noted that Biden and Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerDemocrats blast Trump for commuting Roger Stone: ‘The most corrupt president in history’A renewed emphasis on research and development funding is needed from the governmentData shows seven Senate Democrats have majority non-white staffsMORE (Ill.) have both pledged to make immigration reform the first issue raised after a successful November.
Theyve all said its first up, Durbin said in remarks before the Senate left for the July 4 recess.
Its definitely on the agenda, said Menendez, who said it would help the economy.
Billions more for the economy, Social Security, the wages of all Americans rose. On an economic basis alone, it was a compelling issue, he added.
Biden last month promised on day one of his presidency to send a bill to Congress that creates a clear roadmap to citizenship for Dreamers and 11 million undocumented people who are already strengthening our nation.
Biden said the legislation is long overdue.
There has been little public discussion of Democrats plans for immigration reform in 2021.
This is partly because the focus has been on the coronavirus pandemic and calls for police reform, but political considerations are a part of the atmosphere. Talking up plans to push a path to citizenship for 11 million unauthorized immigrants living in the country could give Trump, whose approval rating is hovering around 40 percent, a chance to go on the offensive.
The president made illegal immigration one of his top issues in the 2016 campaign and won a legal victory last month when the Supreme Court ruled 7 to 2 to allow the administration to expedite deportations of asylum seekers.
Democrats need to gain three seats and capture the White House to regain the Senate majority. Republicans hold 53 seats currently but have to protect 23 seats up for re-election while Democrats only have to defend 12.
Menendez, a member of the bipartisan Gang of Eight that negotiated the 2013 Senate immigration bill that passed with 68 votes, said it can be a template for legislation next year.
Not too many issues here of such controversy gets [68] votes. A lot in there should be revisited, he said.
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamGraham says he will call Mueller to testify before Senate panel about Russia probeRomney blasts Trump’s Stone commutation: ‘Historic corruption’Lincoln Project offers list of GOP senators who ‘protect’ Trump in new adMORE (R-S.C.), another member of the 2013 Gang of Eight, says hes willing to work with Democrats again on a comprehensive immigration reform bill if he wins re-election in November.
Like Menendez, Graham says the 2013 bill, which would have provided a path to citizenship for 11 million immigrants and would have protected immigrants who came to the country as children from deportation, could be a template for negotiations next year.
Graham said he would play the same role Ive always played.
I want to solve a broken immigration system. Im proud of the efforts of the past. Im not giving up on this. God knows we need a better immigration system and the 11 million, well treat them fairly, he said.
He said the 2013 bill worked for me though he also acknowledged things have changed in the past seven years.
Frank Sharry, the founder of Americas Voice, which supports putting 11 million undocumented immigrants on a path to full citizenship, however, says the concessions made to Republicans in the 2013 immigration bill may no longer be on the table.
With respect to legislation, I think most advocates think the idea of a bipartisan and comprehensive approach is a failed strategy of the past, not a priority for the future, he said. How many times have we been through this?
Lets focus on what we really need to get done, which is a path to citizenship for 11 million people, he said.
Sharry acknowledged focusing on a path to citizenship for immigrants is likely to face stiff Republican resistance and said Democrats should consider eliminating the filibuster if necessary to allow immigration legislation to pass with less than 60 votes.
It probably only happens if the filibuster is done away with, he said. Lets say Democrats have 52, 54 seats, even, in the Senate, the idea of Lindsey Graham of corralling another eight or nine votes to get well over 60 I dont see it happening.
Its path to citizenship with Democrats only. If Republicans vote for it, terrific. But if they dont, no problem, he said.
He also raised the possibility of passing immigration reform with a simple majority under the Senates special budget reconciliation process, which Republicans used to pass tax reform legislation in 2017.
The likelihood that the Congressional Budget Office would project a sizeable economic benefit from immigration reform could bolster arguments to the parliamentarian that such legislation should qualify for the special procedural pathway.
Sharry said that aside from legislation, advocates are going to be focused on executive actions Biden can take to reverse Trumps immigration record of the past three and a half years.
Number one, theres a huge administrative overhaul agenda, given the way Trump and Stephen MillerStephen MillerIn DACA ruling, Supreme Court ignores Trump’s racial biasThe Memo: Trump’s Tulsa decision sparks new race controversyGeorge Conway group targets Trump over ‘blatant racism’ in new adMORE used [the Department of Homeland Security] to inflict their cruelty on refugees and immigrants. Thats going to be a major theater of action to both roll back and to move forward on how the immigration system functions on a daily basis, he said.
A recent Supreme Court decision blocking the Trump administrations bid to dismantle the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which protects an estimated 700,000 immigrants from deportation, has put immigration policy back in the spotlight.
Durbin last week asked for unanimous consent on the Senate floor to pass the American Dream and Promise Act, which would give DACA recipients, who are also known as Dreamers, a path to citizenship. The legislation passed the House. It would protect immigrants who came to the country illegally as children from deportation.
Were in a position at this moment where we have to act, he said in a floor speech, highlighting immigrants who have served as essential workers during the pandemic.
Durbins request failed after Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzOh, Canada: Should the US emulate Canada’s National Health Service?Trump tweets his support for Goya Foods amid boycottTrump says he’ll sign order with ‘road to citizenship’ for DACA recipientsMORE (R-Texas) objected, portending a partisan brawl over the issue if Democrats win back the Senate.
Democrats sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellCongress pulls punches on Russian bounties firestormCongress under pressure to provide billions for school openingsHillicon Valley: Facebook considers political ad ban | Senators raise concerns over civil rights audit | Amazon reverses on telling workers to delete TikTokMORE (R-Ky.) in late June arguing the Senate has a responsibility to consider legislation to protect the young immigrants who are eligible for DACA.
With Republicans in the majority, the United States Senate has failed to address our immigration challenges, they wrote.
Schumer in a floor speech last week also praised immigrants who came to the country as children for playing critical roles during the pandemic.
I love these kids and their families, he said. Ive watched them on the front lines during the COVID crisis in New York risk their lives, even though theyre not allowed to be full Americans, to help.