Pence: Trump's immigration proposal to reopen government 'is not amnesty'

Pence: Trump's immigration proposal to reopen government 'is not amnesty'
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Vice President Pence on Sunday defended President TrumpDonald John TrumpWarren defends, Buttigieg attacks in debate that shrank the field Five takeaways from the Democratic debate in Ohio Democrats debate in Ohio: Who came out on top? MORE's immigration proposal to reopen the government against criticism from both Democrats and hard-line conservatives, calling it a "good-faith effort" to address immigration issues.

Pence pushed back on "Fox News Sunday" against conservatives who likened Trump's plan to amnesty by offering protections for "Dreamers" and Temporary Protected Status recipients.

"This is not amnesty," Pence said. "There’s no pathway to citizenship there’s no permanent status here at all, which is what amnesty contemplates.


"I think as the American people look at this, Chris, they’re going to see this for what it is," he added. "President Trump said 'bring me the ideas from all sides, let's put them all on the table.' The president has made it clear what he would support. Now it’s time for the Senate and the House to start voting to secure our border and reopen the government."

Trump on Saturday proposed a deal that includes more than $5 billion in funding for a wall along the southern border, a three-year extension of protections for “Dreamers” who benefit from the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and Temporary Protected Status holders, and funding for additional immigration judges and other border security measures.

The bill, if passed, would end the partial government shutdown that has lasted 30 days and counting. The shutdown was triggered by Trump's demand for more than $5 billion in funding for the border wall.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTrump-GOP tensions over Syria show signs of easing Trump again vetoes resolution blocking national emergency for border wall Trump invites congressional leaders to meeting on Turkey MORE (R-Ky.) said he would bring Trump’s proposal up for a vote this week, but Democrats quickly signaled they did not support the plan, with Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiTrump-GOP tensions over Syria show signs of easing Democratic debate starts with immediate question on Trump impeachment White House, Pentagon, Giuliani reject House subpoenas MORE (D-Calif.) calling the concept a “non-starter.”

The vice president dismissed the possibility of reopening the government as negotiations over wall funding continue, arguing that Democrats have indicated they would not agree to money for the structure even once federal agencies were funded.

"Frankly, Chris, what the American people want us to do is to work on their priorities," Pence said. "And the American people want us to secure the border."