Later Tuesday, the Senate will vote on whether to proceed to the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act.

ADVERTISEMENT
The bipartisan group of eight senators, known as the Gang of Eight, introduced S. 744, which would create a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants already in the country, toughen border security, create a guest worker program and boost high-skilled immigration.

Some Republicans have complained that the legislation would provide amnesty over 10 years for the nearly 11 million residents in the country illegally before strengthening border enforcement. 

Cruz said that there aren’t enough votes in the House to pass the pathway to citizenship laid out in the Gang of Eight’s bill.

“There are not 218 votes on the other side, in the House, to pass a pathway to citizenship,” Cruz said. “Right now, in my opinion, this bill is headed toward failure. … Absent major revisions, this bill will crash and burn in the House, and I believe it is designed to do so.”

Cruz said he thinks the bill will pass the Senate easily, but that Senate Democrats have been unwilling to allow amendments to the bill that would help it pass the House.

“I very much want common-sense immigration reform to pass. This bill will pass the Senate, but it will not pass the House,” Cruz said. “As written, this bill would not become law.”

Before Cruz spoke, Sen. Charles SchumerCharles SchumerTrump: Why aren't 'beleaguered AG,' investigators looking at Hillary Clinton? Trump: Washington ‘actually much worse than anyone ever thought’ Schumer: Dems didn't 'tell people what we stood for' in 2016 MORE (D-N.Y.), a member of the Gang of Eight, said a pathway to citizenship was a principle within the immigration bill that Democrats would not compromise on.

“We will not leave these 11 million people in immigration limbo forever,” Schumer said on the floor Tuesday. “We’re not interested in scoring a political victory to help a political party. We’re interested in changing the status quo to make America a better place … but one thing we will never do is condition the pathway to citizenship on measure that will never happen.”

Sens. Marco RubioMarco RubioMexican politicians have a new piñata: Donald Trump Bush ethics lawyer: Congress must tell Trump not to fire Mueller The private alternative to the National Flood Insurance Program  MORE (R-Fla.), John McCainJohn McCainSenate GOP: McCain may return for ObamaCare vote Tuesday McConnell urges Senate to start ObamaCare repeal debate Tuesday The Hill's 12:30 Report MORE (R-Ariz.), Lindsey GrahamLindsey GrahamWeek ahead: Senate defense bill faces delay Week ahead: Uncertainty surrounds ObamaCare repeal vote Trump's DOJ gears up for crackdown on marijuana MORE (R-S.C.), Jeff FlakeJeff FlakeTrump slams 'sad' Republicans who won't 'protect' him Trump backers eye GOP primary challenges for Flake, Heller McCain’s primary challenger asks him to step aside after diagnosis MORE (R-Ariz.), Schumer, Dick DurbinDick DurbinTop Dem: Trump’s voter fraud commission will accomplish what Putin wants Senators who have felt McCain's wrath talk of their respect for him Graham and Kushner met to discuss immigration differences: report MORE (D-Ill.), 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.) and Michael BennetMichael BennetTax credits bring much needed relief Senate Dem: No clarity, 'little competence' behind travel ban Dems step up attacks on GOP ObamaCare bill MORE (D-Colo.) comprise the Gang of Eight.

The Senate is expected to continue work on the immigration reform bill throughout June.