Schumer: Dems want DACA fix in government spending bill

Schumer: Dems want DACA fix in government spending bill
© Greg Nash

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerJuan Williams: The politics of impeachment Texas Republicans slam White House over disaster relief request Dem rep: Trump disaster aid request is 'how you let America down again' MORE (D-N.Y.) said Tuesday that Democrats will push to include a deal on a key Obama-era immigration program in the end-of-year spending bill, predicting President Trump won't veto such legislation and cause a government shutdown.

"He won't veto the bill. ... If DACA [the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program] is in the omnibus he will not veto it, is my prediction," Schumer told reporters. 
 
Senate Republicans and Trump agreed during a closed-door meeting last week that they would oppose including a deal on DACA in the December government-funding bill. 
 
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But Schumer, asked about that decision, said Tuesday that Democrats want it in the legislation, and he expects their demand will get some support from Republicans.
 
"We do [want it in the bill]," the Senate's top Democrat said. "We feel very strongly that DACA must pass and pass by Dec. 31. ... We think we're going to have a good number of Republican colleagues join us." 
 
The fight over immigrants brought into the country illegally as children is emerging as the largest hurdle to avoiding a government shutdown after Dec. 8. 
 
Trump decided earlier this year that he would phase out DACA, which allows the immigrants to work and go to school without fear of deportation. The program will end on March 5, setting up a deadline early next year for Congress to pass a legislative replacement. 
 
Democrats believe they have leverage in the upcoming spending fight because Republicans will need their votes to get legislation onto Trump's desk. 
 
Several Democrats from the Senate's progressive wing have pledged that they will not support a government funding bill unless it includes a DACA fix or unless Congress has already passed separate immigration legislation. 
 
 
But Schumer downplayed the chances of a government shutdown on Tuesday. 
 
"It won't come to that. I think we'll have Republicans joining us," he said.