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 SchumerCEOs praise House GOP border tax proposal Overnight Cybersecurity: Trump defends Flynn, blasts leaks | Yahoo fears further breach Overnight Finance: Trump's Labor pick withdraws | Ryan tries to save tax plan | Trump pushes tax reform with retailers 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 RubioGOP loses top Senate contenders How does placing sanctions on Russia help America? Republicans play clean up on Trump's foreign policy MORE (R-Fla.), John McCainJohn McCainTrump names McMaster new national security adviser How does placing sanctions on Russia help America? THE MEMO: Trump's wild first month MORE (R-Ariz.), Lindsey GrahamLindsey GrahamCEOs praise House GOP border tax proposal Trump’s feud with the press in the spotlight Senators eye new sanctions against Iran MORE (R-S.C.), Jeff FlakeJeff FlakeGOP sets sights on internet privacy rules Overnight Tech: GOP chairman to propose high-skilled visa overhaul | Zuckerberg's 5,700 word letter | Tech lobbies gear up ahead of internet fight Senate Dem blasts GOP for trying to repeal broadband privacy rules MORE (R-Ariz.), Schumer, Dick DurbinDick Durbin McConnell: I’m very sympathetic to 'Dreamers' Senate Dems move to nix Trump's deportation order Dem senators call for independent Flynn probe MORE (D-Ill.), Robert MenendezRobert MenendezSteve Mnuchin, foreclosure king, now runs your US Treasury Senate Dems move to nix Trump's deportation order Senators to Trump: We support additional Iran sanctions MORE (D-N.J.) and Michael BennetMichael BennetSenate advances Trump's Commerce pick Senate Dems move to nix Trump's deportation order Senators to Trump: We support additional Iran sanctions MORE (D-Colo.) comprise the Gang of Eight.

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