Senate Dem: Trump immigration proposal a 'starting point'

Senate Dem: Trump immigration proposal a 'starting point'
© Greg Nash

Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) on Sunday said President TrumpDonald John TrumpCould Donald Trump and Boris Johnson be this generation's Reagan-Thatcher? Merkel backs Democratic congresswomen over Trump How China's currency manipulation cheats America on trade MORE's proposal to extend protections for young undocumented immigrants in exchange for wall funding is a "starting point."

Warner, appearing on NBC's "Meet the Press," added that Trump must first reopen the government and said Democrats can't reward the "behavior of hostage taking."

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"Let me just also make clear that what the president proposed yesterday, increasing border security, looking at TPS, looking at, at the Dreamers, I'll use that as a starting point. But you've got to start by opening the government," Warner said.

"What we cannot do, and I've actually had Republicans as well recognize this, is that we cannot reward the kind of behavior of hostage taking. Because if the president can arbitrarily shut down the government now, he will do it time and again," he added.

Trump on Saturday said he would extend protections for some groups of immigrants in exchange for $5.7 billion in funding for a wall along the southern border.

Democratic leadership has been quick to downplay the proposal, with Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiDHS chief to Pelosi: Emergency border funding 'has already had an impact' The Hill's Morning Report: Trump walks back from 'send her back' chants Trump faces new hit on deficit MORE (D-Calif.) calling it a "non-starter."

Trump's demand for a border wall sparked the ongoing government shutdown, which began Dec. 22 and is now in its 30th day.