“The policy changes of this proposal far outweigh the budgetary impact scored to it and it is not appropriate for inclusion in reconciliation.”
The Hill reported that Senate parliamentarian Elizabeth MacDonough ruled the Democrats plan to give out 8 million green cards in the spending package does not meet the rules for what they can put in the bill.
From The Hill:
MacDonough’s guidance, a copy of which was obtained by The Hill, likely closes the door to Democrats using the spending bill to provide a pathway to citizenship for millions of immigrants.
MacDonough, in her guidance, called the Democratic plan “by any standard a broad, new immigration policy.”
“The policy changes of this proposal far outweigh the budgetary impact scored to it and it is not appropriate for inclusion in reconciliation,” she wrote in the ruling obtained by The Hill.
Democrats pitched MacDonough earlier this month on their plan to use the $3.5 trillion spending bill to provide 8 million greencards for four groups of immigrants: Dreamers, temporary protected status (TPS) holders, agricultural workers and essential workers. Getting legal permanent resident status allows an individual to eventually apply for citizenship, if they can meet other qualifications.
The Democrats want to use reconciliation to pass the bill without Republicans. They must abide by certain requirements, including “any provision in the bill has to impact the federal government’s spending or revenues and that the impact can’t be ‘merely incidental’ to non-budgetary intentions.”
The Democrats have tried to slip other changes past MacDonough without any success.
In February, the Democrats tried to push through the $15 minimum wage hike in the COVID relief package. The Republicans claimed the Congressional Budget Office report the Democrats tried to use to justify the wage hike also suggested “would result in the loss of 1.4 million jobs.” Therefore, the Republicans argued the wage hike was “an extraneous provision.”
MacDonough decided the Byrd Rule applied, which “allows senators to block provisions of reconciliation bills that are ‘extraneous’ to reconciliation’s basic purpose of implementing budget changes.”DONATE
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