Nearly half of the Senate Republicans have announced that they will oppose a bipartisan agreement to toughen US immigration laws and enact new border security measures.
Since the text of the agreement was released on Sunday night, 22 of the 49 GOP senators have publicly stated they are outright opposed to the legislation, which includes new funding for the detention of migrants, tough measures around asylum seekers, and gives the administration greater authorities to expel migrants if illegal border crossings exceed 5,000 per day.
And just a handful of Senate Republicans are openly supportive of the legislation, including Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Sen. James Lankford of Oklahoma, who negotiated the deal with Democratic Sen. Chris Murphy of Connecticut and Independent Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona.
While the opposition isn’t yet enough to fully kill the bill in the Senate — just three Democrats have come out against the bill, which also includes another $60 billion in aid to Ukraine and more than $14 billion for Israel — it’s the latest sign that this issue of border security is unlikely to be addressed anytime soon.
According to multiple reports, McConnell is encouraging senators to vote against a motion to advance the bill on Wednesday as Republicans sort out their divisions over the proposal.
House GOP leadership has even declared that the bill won’t receive a vote in the lower chamber, saying in a joint statement earlier on Monday that the bill “fails in every policy area needed to secure our border.”
Former President Donald Trump has forcefully come out against the agreement while also saying that changes to border policy “should not be tied to foreign aid in any way, shape, or form.”
Yet that’s exactly what Republican senators insisted upon when President Joe Biden requested additional foreign aid from Congress in October.
Generally speaking, House Republicans have pushed for a bill known as “HR 2,” which includes a curtailment of migrants’ ability to seek asylum while forcing the continued construction of a wall on the border. That bill passed the House along party lines earlier this year but has been rejected by Democrats.
And while most of the GOP opposition stems from a desire for more stringent policies, some Republicans have suggested that they do not want to do anything that might help Biden politically.
Here are the senators who have indicated their opposition to the deal:
- John Barrasso of Wyoming
- Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee
- Mike Braun of Indiana
- Katie Britt of Alabama
- Ted Budd of North Carolina
- Tom Cotton of Arkansas
- Ted Cruz of Texas
- Steve Daines of Montana
- Deb Fischer of Nebraska
- Bill Hagerty of Tennessee
- Josh Hawley of Missouri
- Ron Johnson of Wisconsin
- Mike Lee of Utah
- Roger Marshall of Kansas
- Rand Paul of Kentucky
- Jim Risch of Idaho
- Marco Rubio of Florida
- Eric Schmitt of Missouri
- Rick Scott of Florida
- Tim Scott of South Carolina
- Tommy Tuberville of Alabama
- JD Vance of Ohio