GOP senator: The way Congress makes deals 'pretty much sucks'

Sen. John KennedyJohn Neely KennedyMORE (R-La.), on Wednesday, suggested the Senate should try an alternative approach to agreeing on immigration reform, arguing that the negotiation method for the past decade “pretty much sucks.”

“I know this is naive and this isn’t the way things are done around here, but the way we’ve done things around here for the past 10 years pretty much sucks,” Kennedy said on “Meet The Press Daily.”

“What I’d like to do is just say 'OK, we’re going to convene in the Senate, and let everybody put their ideas up on how to fix the immigration laws,' and let’s start voting. And some will pass, and some won’t,” he continued.


Lawmakers are attempting to negotiate immigration reform, including a long-term solution for those impacted by ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

The Trump administration announced last year it would rescind DACA, which allows certain immigrants brought to the U.S. illegally as children to remain here and work without fear of deportation.

At the same time, Congress must pass a spending bill before Friday to avert a government shutdown. Democratic leaders have indicated they won’t support a bill that doesn’t include protections for Dreamers, the label for those who benefit from DACA.

Republican leaders, meanwhile, have expressed opposition to including immigration reform in any spending bill, making it likely that a short-term spending bill will be the only solution to keep the government open.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellOvernight Health Care: Following debate, Biden hammers Trump on coronavirus | Study: Universal mask-wearing could save 130,000 lives | Finger-pointing picks up in COVID-19 relief fight On The Money: Finger-pointing picks up in COVID-19 relief fight | Landlords, housing industry sue CDC to overturn eviction ban Finger-pointing picks up in COVID-19 relief fight MORE (R-Ky.) said Wednesday he won’t bring an immigration bill to the floor unless President TrumpDonald John TrumpIvanka Trump, Jared Kusher's lawyer threatens to sue Lincoln Project over Times Square billboards Facebook, Twitter CEOs to testify before Senate Judiciary Committee on Nov. 17 Sanders hits back at Trump's attack on 'socialized medicine' MORE has voiced support for a particular deal.

Trump has, in recent days, given conflicting signals. In one meeting, he told lawmakers he would sign whatever bill they delivered to him. He later expressed disapproval with a bill backed by Sens. Dick DurbinRichard (Dick) Joseph DurbinMcConnell tees up Barrett nomination, setting up rare weekend session Bipartisan group of senators call on Trump to sanction Russia over Navalny poisoning Republicans advance Barrett's Supreme Court nomination after Democrats boycott committee vote MORE (D-Ill.) and Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamFacebook, Twitter CEOs to testify before Senate Judiciary Committee on Nov. 17 The Hill's Campaign Report: 2020 spending wars | Biden looks to clean up oil comments | Debate ratings are in Jaime Harrison raises million in two weeks for South Carolina Senate bid MORE (R-S.C.). 

Kennedy said Wednesday it doesn’t bother him that Trump has appeared to change his mind on what he would sign, saying, “That’s his prerogative."

“I do agree that we have to know where the president stands and what he’s finally willing to live with. Otherwise we’re all going to pass something and he could veto it and then what’s the point," he said.