Senators working on drafting an immigration reform bill are "90 percent" finished, Sen. Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerSchumer wants investigation into Chinese-designed New York subway cars Getting serious about infrastructure Schumer calls on McConnell to hold vote on Equality Act MORE (D-N.Y.), a member of the bipartisan group, said Wednesday.

"The bottom line is we're very close," Schumer said, striking an optimistic note. "I'd say we're 90 percent there. We have a few little problems to work on, we've been on the phone with our four colleagues all day."

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Schumer made the comments after he and Sens. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainPelosi receives John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award Romney: Trump 'has distanced himself from some of the best qualities of the human character' MSNBC host: Barr 'the most dangerous person' who works for Trump MORE (R-Ariz.), Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeThe Hill's Morning Report - White House, Congress: Urgency of now around budget Jeff Daniels blasts 'cowardice' of Senate Republicans against Trump WANTED: A Republican with courage MORE (R-Ariz.), and Michael BennetMichael Farrand BennetThe Hill's Morning Report - White House, Congress: Urgency of now around budget Overnight Energy: Warren wants Dems to hold climate-focused debate | Klobuchar joins candidates rejecting fossil fuel money | 2020 contender Bennet offers climate plan CNN announces four more town halls featuring 2020 Dems MORE (D-Colo.) toured the U.S.-Mexico border in Nogales, Ariz., on Wednesday. The four are all members of the "Gang of Eight" senators who have been drafting a bill to overhaul the nation’s immigration laws.

The group unveiled its framework in January and has been negotiating the details, with hopes to introduce a bill by the end of April.

Schumer and McCain used the post-tour press conference to stress the importance of border security.

"I don't know if this changed my views because Sen. McCain and Sen. Flake made clear what we needed on the border, but I'll be able to explain this to my colleagues," Schumer said. "Many of my colleagues say, 'Why do we need to do anything on the border?' We should."

Heightened border security, a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants already in the country, as well as measures to boost high-skilled immigration and create a guest worker program will be elements of the final package.

With strong Republican opposition to measures that would grant legalized status to illegal immigrants, efforts to boost border security could be a key element in winning support from conservative lawmakers.

McCain said that the $85 billion in across-the-board sequester spending cuts had weakened border security.

"There's no doubt that our border is less secure because of the sequester. And we'll be doing whatever we can to restore the funding," he said.

President Obama and congressional lawmakers have displayed an eagerness to pass a big immigration bill. The White House, which took a hit in polls after the recent fights over the budget, hopes to boost Obama's political standing by moving the focus toward immigration reform.

Obama has said the issue is a second-term priority and told lawmakers that “the time has come” to move legislation during a naturalization ceremony at the White House on Monday.

A bipartisan House group is also working on a proposal, but while those details have not been released, their efforts have received the general backing of leaders from both parties.