US lawmakers struggle with immigration issue

Migrant families from Mexico hoping to seek asylum speaking to US Customs and Border Protection officers at the Paso del Norte international border crossing bridge in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, on Wednesday. Republican and Democratic senators are divided
Migrant families from Mexico hoping to seek asylum speaking to US Customs and Border Protection officers at the Paso del Norte international border crossing bridge in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, on Wednesday. Republican and Democratic senators are divided sharply along partisan lines in the immigration debate. PHOTO: REUTERS

Conservative leaders in the United States House of Representatives said yesterday they believed it was unlikely either of two immigration Bills intended to stop the separation of families entering the US illegally would pass the chamber, just a day after US President Donald Trump signed an executive order to stop the practice.

Republican US representatives Ralph Norman and Mark Meadows told reporters at the Capitol that they did not think the Bills had enough support in the Republican-controlled House.

Mr Trump yesterday cast doubt on Twitter about whether any Republican immigration legislation could pass the Senate - a move that Republican aides said could undermine the efforts to round up votes from the party to pass the endangered Bills in the House later in the day.

Senators in both parties so far have split sharply along partisan lines in the debate. There is little dispute, however, that representatives and senators need to act.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 22, 2018, with the headline 'US lawmakers struggle with immigration issue'. Print Edition | Subscribe