Graham: Senate should come back for border bill

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) called on Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) to bring the Senate back if the House passes its emergency border spending bill.

“If it is able to pass, I urge the majority leader to bring the Senate back,” Graham said on the Senate floor Friday. “Bring us all back and see if we can find a solution among ourselves. 

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“Five weeks is a very long time to be away from a problem this important.”

Most senators have already left town for the five-week August recess, after the Senate’s $2.7 billion border spending bill failed to get enough support to advance Thursday night.

The House Republican leadership is still working on a deal to vote later Friday on its $659 million bill.

Graham urged the House to include an immigration reform in their bill that would amend a 2008 human trafficking law to make it easier for authorities to send back children from Central America to their home countries. Democrats strongly oppose that idea.

“The House will hopefully pass legislation amending the 2008 law,” Graham said. “Consensus is there if we want to find it.”

Even if the House can pass its own bill, Reid said Friday that he didn’t think it could pass in the Senate.

President Obama originally asked for $3.7 billion to provide legal services and temporarily house and feed the thousands of children fleeing Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala.

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