Senate Majority Whip Dick DurbinDick DurbinGraham gets frustrated in public ‘unmasking’ debate Senate Dems set principles for potential budget negotiation Dem senator: GOP's healthcare approach will 'devastate Medicaid' MORE (D-Ill.) said it's "unlikely" that the Senate would move on immigration reform this year.

Durbin said that a tough political environment, especially for Republicans, made it all but politically impossible to move forward with an immigration bill.

"It's unlikely we'll get to it this year," Durbin told the liberal Bill Press radio show, pointing to the political environment.

A group of Democratic senators released their outline for comprehensive immigration legislation several weeks ago. That proposal, by Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry ReidDems face identity crisis Heller under siege, even before healthcare Charles Koch thanks Harry Reid for helping his book sales MORE (D-Nev.) and Sens. Charles SchumerCharles SchumerSenate Dems step up protests ahead of ObamaCare repeal vote Senate Dems plan floor protest ahead of ObamaCare repeal vote Dem senator: Don't bet against McConnell on ObamaCare repeal MORE (D-N.Y.) and Robert MenendezRobert MenendezBipartisan group, Netflix actress back bill for American Latino Museum The Mideast-focused Senate letter we need to see Taiwan deserves to participate in United Nations MORE (D-N.J.), would emphasize border security before providing a path to U.S. citizenship for illegal immigrants.

"Can we do it? Unlikely," Durbin said of the chances of that bill advancing. "You saw what happened in Utah to Bob Bennett."

Reid himself has acknowledged that the current Senate make-up, where Democrats need at least one Republican vote to advance legislation, made immigration reform tougher. But the majority leader had for a time planned to move immigration next, after Democrats wrap up their Wall Street reform bill.

Reid backed off pushing forward on immigration when Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey GrahamOvernight Cybersecurity: New ransomware attack spreads globally | US pharma giant hit | House intel panel interviews Podesta | US, Kenya deepen cyber partnership Graham gets frustrated in public ‘unmasking’ debate GOP senator: Don't expect Trump to 'have your back' on healthcare vote MORE (R-S.C.) threatened to withdraw from talks on both that issue and energy and climate legislation.

Durbin still said there was a "remote chance" that Democrats would move an immigration bill, but did not sound an optimistic note.

The decision on moving immigration has political trade-offs for Democrats. On one hand, they may manage to avoid a potentially divisive fight over an immigration bill that might put centrists in their party on the spot. On the other, advocates of immigration reform in the party like Rep. Luis GutierrezLuis GutierrezJudiciary Dem asks GOP chairman to invite Trump to testify in public The Hill's 12:30 Report Dems plan to sue Trump over conflicts of interest: report MORE (D-Ill.) have warned that Latino voters might stay home out of frustration with Democrats, if they fail to put together a bill.