Merkley Statement on Immigration Vote

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley released the following statement after a Senate vote on the Rounds-King immigration proposal failed:

“After President Trump ripped away the legal status of our nation’s DACA recipients, we have been working for months to find a bipartisan compromise that would protect Dreamers – young Americans who know no other home. Today’s vote shows that while many Senators were willing to negotiate in good faith, the White House and Breitbart-led Republicans are determined to block any compromise and instead want to keep using the Dreamers as hostages for an extreme anti-immigrant agenda.

“This proposal was a tough compromise. It fails to protect Dreamers’ parents, and it provides a path to begin construction of a wall that stops neither people nor drugs. But this proposal also represented the best chance to protect Dreamers, and we need to do right by these young people who are American in every way but a piece of paper.

“Little over a month ago, President Trump convened bipartisan leaders and said if they worked out a deal, he would sign it. He said he would ‘take the heat’ to get that deal over the finish line. But today’s events show starkly that those words were a lie. Presented with a true, bipartisan compromise to solve this issue, President Trump didn’t take the heat to sell it – he took a knife to kill it.”