Senators strike deal to end government shutdown without protections for Dreamers

Chuck Schumer
Sen. Chuck Schumer

The partial shutdown of the federal government is poised to end after Senate Republicans and Democrats reached a deal Monday on a temporary funding bill.

Senate Democrats are accepting a deal made with Kentucky-Republican, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for an immigration vote, in return for temporary government funding.

Late Sunday evening, McConnell promised his colleagues he would take up an immigration bill that would protect an estimated 800,000 “Dreamers” from deportation if the two sides aisle can’t agree to one by Feb. 8.

“It would be my intention to take up legislation here in the Senate that would address DACA, border security, and related issues as well as disaster relief, defense funding, health care, and other important matters,” McConnell said. “It would be my strong preference for the Senate to consider a proposal that can actually be signed into law, a bipartisan, bicameral group is already negotiating, and I look forward to completion of its work.”

Alabama’s newly elected Democratic Sen. Doug Jones said he was encouraged by McConnell’s words a little before midnight Sunday evening.

“I’ve participated in discussions w/ colleagues from both sides that have focused on finding a bipartisan path forward to keep the gov’t operating. I’m encouraged by the comments made by acknowledging our efforts & the broad interest in finding common ground,” Jones tweeted.

New York-Democrat and Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer said McConnell’s pledge was enough to convince some Democrats to switch their votes.

“After several discussions, offers and counteroffers, the Republican leader and I have come to an arrangement. We will vote today to reopen the government to continue negotiating a global agreement,” Schumer said.

Three-day shutdown is expected to end in a few hours.