Obama calls Senate gang to offer congrats on immigration

President Obama called the eight senators who crafted the immigration reform legislation approved by the Senate from his African trip on Thursday to congratulate them on their victory.

Obama spoke to Sens. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamGOP senators introduce bill targeting Palestinian 'martyr payments' Bipartisan senators earmark billion to support democracies globally Democrats see Christmas goal slipping away MORE (R-S.C.), John McCainJohn Sidney McCainDole to lie in state in Capitol Rotunda Bob Dole: A great leader of the 'Greatest Generation' The bully who pulls the levers of Trump's mind never learns MORE (R-Ariz.), Michael BennetMichael Farrand BennetDemocrats see Christmas goal slipping away Hickenlooper: Law preventing cannabis business banking 'a recipe for disaster' Senators call for Smithsonian Latino, women's museums to be built on National Mall MORE (D-Colo.) and Charles SchumerChuck SchumerBuild Back Better Is bad for the states  Dole to lie in state in Capitol Rotunda Biden points to drug prices in call for Senate social spending vote MORE (D-N.Y.) after returning from an official dinner in Senegal Thursday night, White House spokesman Jay Carney said.

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The president also spoke to Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerFeehery: The next Republican wave is coming Rift widens between business groups and House GOP Juan Williams: Pelosi shows her power MORE (R-Ohio) and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), and urged them to take up immigration reform.

Obama tried but failed to reach Sens. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeRubio vows to slow-walk Biden's China, Spain ambassador nominees Senate confirms Thomas Nides as US ambassador to Israel Flake, Cindy McCain among latest Biden ambassadors confirmed after delay MORE (R-Ariz.), Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioGOP senators introduce bill targeting Palestinian 'martyr payments' House to vote on Uyghur bill amid diplomatic boycott of Beijing Olympics This week: Congress poised to go into December overtime MORE (R-Fla.), Bob MenendezRobert (Bob) MenendezFive ways Senate could change Biden's spending plan Spending bill faces Senate scramble Republicans raise concerns over Biden's nominee for ambassador to Germany MORE (D-N.J.) and Dick DurbinDick DurbinSchumer steps on the gas to move Biden agenda Demand Justice launches ad campaign backing Biden nominee who drew GOP pushback The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Uber - Omicron tests vaccines; Bob Dole dies at 98 MORE (D-Ill.), the other four authors of the Senate bill. The eight members are known as the gang of eight.

Carney would not elaborate on the White House strategy going forward when it comes to tackling immigration, one of Obama's top priorities in his second term. The White House spokesman simply emphasized that the legislation “enjoyed substantial bipartisan support in the Senate” and argued it would be a “boon” to the economy — including significantly reducing the deficit —if it became law.

Carney pledged that the White House would work with the House the same way it did with the Senate, “which is to make clear what our principles are and to provide the significant amount of policy expertise that we have, and data that we have, and to be as helpful to the process as we can.”