Amendment Text: S.Amdt.1948 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)

Shown Here:
Amendment as Proposed (02/14/2018)

This Amendment appears on page S931 in the following article from the Congressional Record.

[Congressional Record Volume 164, Number 29 (Wednesday, February 14, 2018)]
[Pages S930-S965]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




                   BROADER OPTIONS FOR AMERICANS ACT

  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The clerk will report the bill.
  The senior assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

       A bill (H.R. 2579) to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 
     1986 to allow the premium tax credit with respect to 
     unsubsidized COBRA continuation coverage.

  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The Senator from Iowa.


                           Amendment No. 1959

       (Purpose: In the nature of a substitute.)

  Mr. GRASSLEY. Mr. President, I call up amendment No. 1959.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The clerk will report.
  The senior assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Iowa [Mr. Grassley] proposes an amendment 
     numbered 1959.

  Mr. GRASSLEY. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the reading 
of the amendment be dispensed with.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. Without objection, it is so 
ordered.
  (The amendment is printed in today's Record under ``Text of 
Amendments.'')
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The majority leader.


                Amendment No. 1948 to Amendment No. 1959

  Mr. McCONNELL. Mr. President, I call up the Toomey amendment No. 1948 
to the Grassley amendment No. 1959.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The clerk will report.
  The senior assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from Kentucky [Mr. McConnell], for Mr. Toomey, 
     proposes an amendment numbered 1948 to amendment No. 1959.

  Mr. McCONNELL. I ask unanimous consent that the reading of the 
amendment be dispensed with.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. Without objection, it is so 
ordered.

[[Page S931]]

  The amendment is as follows:

(Purpose: To ensure that State and local law enforcement may cooperate 
    with Federal officials to protect our communities from violent 
  criminals and suspected terrorists who are illegally present in the 
                             United States)

       At the appropriate place, insert the following:

     SEC. __. STOP DANGEROUS SANCTUARY CITIES ACT.

       (a) Short Title.--This section may be cited as the ``Stop 
     Dangerous Sanctuary Cities Act''.
       (b) Ensuring That Local and Federal Law Enforcement 
     Officers May Cooperate to Safeguard Our Communities.--
       (1) Authority to cooperate with federal officials.--A 
     State, a political subdivision of a State, or an officer, 
     employee, or agent of such State or political subdivision 
     that complies with a detainer issued by the Department of 
     Homeland Security under section 236 or 287 of the Immigration 
     and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1226 and 1357)--
       (A) shall be deemed to be acting as an agent of the 
     Department of Homeland Security; and
       (B) with regard to actions taken to comply with the 
     detainer, shall have all authority available to officers and 
     employees of the Department of Homeland Security.
       (2) Legal proceedings.--In any legal proceeding brought 
     against a State, a political subdivision of a State, or an 
     officer, employee, or agent of such State or political 
     subdivision, which challenges the legality of the seizure or 
     detention of an individual pursuant to a detainer issued by 
     the Department of Homeland Security under section 236 or 287 
     of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1226 and 
     1357)--
       (A) no liability shall lie against the State or political 
     subdivision of a State for actions taken in compliance with 
     the detainer; and
       (B) if the actions of the officer, employee, or agent of 
     the State or political subdivision were taken in compliance 
     with the detainer--
       (i) the officer, employee, or agent shall be deemed--

       (I) to be an employee of the Federal Government and an 
     investigative or law enforcement officer; and
       (II) to have been acting within the scope of his or her 
     employment under section 1346(b) and chapter 171 of title 28, 
     United States Code;

       (ii) section 1346(b) of title 28, United States Code, shall 
     provide the exclusive remedy for the plaintiff; and
       (iii) the United States shall be substituted as defendant 
     in the proceeding.
       (3) Rule of construction.--Nothing in this subsection may 
     be construed to provide immunity to any person who knowingly 
     violates the civil or constitutional rights of an individual.
       (c) Sanctuary Jurisdiction Defined.--
       (1) In general.--Except as provided under paragraph (2), 
     for purposes of this section the term ``sanctuary 
     jurisdiction'' means any State or political subdivision of a 
     State that has in effect a statute, ordinance, policy, or 
     practice that prohibits or restricts any government entity or 
     official from--
       (A) sending, receiving, maintaining, or exchanging with any 
     Federal, State, or local government entity information 
     regarding the citizenship or immigration status (lawful or 
     unlawful) of any individual; or
       (B) complying with a request lawfully made by the 
     Department of Homeland Security under section 236 or 287 of 
     the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1226 and 1357) 
     to comply with a detainer for, or notify about the release 
     of, an individual.
       (2) Exception.--A State or political subdivision of a State 
     shall not be deemed a sanctuary jurisdiction based solely on 
     its having a policy whereby its officials will not share 
     information regarding, or comply with a request made by the 
     Department of Homeland Security under section 236 or 287 of 
     the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1226 and 1357) 
     to comply with a detainer regarding, an individual who comes 
     forward as a victim or a witness to a criminal offense.
       (d) Sanctuary Jurisdictions Ineligible for Certain Federal 
     Funds.--
       (1) Economic development administration grants.--
       (A) Grants for public works and economic development.--
     Section 201(b) of the Public Works and Economic Development 
     Act of 1965 (42 U.S.C. 3141(b)) is amended--
       (i) in paragraph (2), by striking ``and'' at the end;
       (ii) in paragraph (3)(B), by striking the period at the end 
     and inserting ``; and''; and
       (iii) by adding at the end the following:
       ``(4) the area in which the project is to be carried out is 
     not a sanctuary jurisdiction (as defined in subsection (c) of 
     the Stop Dangerous Sanctuary Cities Act).''.
       (B) Grants for planning and administration.--Section 203(a) 
     of the Public Works and Economic Development Act of 1965 (42 
     U.S.C. 3143(a)) is amended by adding at the end the 
     following: ``A sanctuary jurisdiction (as defined in 
     subsection (c) of the Stop Dangerous Sanctuary Cities Act) 
     may not be deemed an eligible recipient under this 
     subsection.''.
       (C) Supplementary grants.--Section 205(a) of the Public 
     Works and Economic Development Act of 1965 (42 U.S.C. 
     3145(a)) is amended--
       (i) in paragraph (2), by striking ``and'' at the end;
       (ii) in paragraph (3)(B), by striking the period at the end 
     and inserting ``; and''; and
       (iii) by adding at the end the following:
       ``(4) will be carried out in an area that does not contain 
     a sanctuary jurisdiction (as defined in subsection (c) of the 
     Stop Dangerous Sanctuary Cities Act).''.
       (D) Grants for training, research, and technical 
     assistance.--Section 207 of the Public Works and Economic 
     Development Act of 1965 (42 U.S.C. 3147) is amended by adding 
     at the end the following:
       ``(c) Ineligibility of Sanctuary Jurisdictions.--Grants 
     funds under this section may not be used to provide 
     assistance to a sanctuary jurisdiction (as defined in 
     subsection (c) of the Stop Dangerous Sanctuary Cities 
     Act).''.
       (2) Community development block grants.--Title I of the 
     Housing and Community Development Act of 1974 (42 U.S.C. 5301 
     et seq.) is amended--
       (A) in section 102(a) (42 U.S.C. 5302(a)), by adding at the 
     end the following:
       ``(25) The term `sanctuary jurisdiction' has the meaning 
     provided in subsection (c) of the Stop Dangerous Sanctuary 
     Cities Act.''.
       (B) in section 104 (42 U.S.C. 5304)--
       (i) in subsection (b)--

       (I) in paragraph (5), by striking ``and'' at the end;
       (II) by redesignating paragraph (6) as paragraph (7); and
       (III) by inserting after paragraph (5) the following:

       ``(6) the grantee is not a sanctuary jurisdiction and will 
     not become a sanctuary jurisdiction during the period for 
     which the grantee receives a grant under this title; and''.
       (ii) by adding at the end the following:
       ``(n) Protection of Individuals Against Crime.--
       ``(1) In general.--No funds authorized to be appropriated 
     to carry out this title may be obligated or expended for any 
     State or unit of general local government that is a sanctuary 
     jurisdiction.
       ``(2) Returned amounts.--
       ``(A) State.--If a State is a sanctuary jurisdiction during 
     the period for which it receives amounts under this title, 
     the Secretary--
       ``(i) shall direct the State to immediately return to the 
     Secretary any such amounts that the State received for that 
     period; and
       ``(ii) shall reallocate amounts returned under clause (i) 
     for grants under this title to other States that are not 
     sanctuary jurisdictions.
       ``(B) Unit of general local government.--If a unit of 
     general local government is a sanctuary jurisdiction during 
     the period for which it receives amounts under this title, 
     any such amounts that the unit of general local government 
     received for that period--
       ``(i) in the case of a unit of general local government 
     that is not in a nonentitlement area, shall be returned to 
     the Secretary for grants under this title to States and other 
     units of general local government that are not sanctuary 
     jurisdictions; and
       ``(ii) in the case of a unit of general local government 
     that is in a nonentitlement area, shall be returned to the 
     Governor of the State for grants under this title to other 
     units of general local government in the State that are not 
     sanctuary jurisdictions.
       ``(C) Reallocation rules.--In reallocating amounts under 
     subparagraphs (A) and (B), the Secretary shall--
       ``(i) apply the relevant allocation formula under 
     subsection (b), with all sanctuary jurisdictions excluded; 
     and
       ``(ii) shall not be subject to the rules for reallocation 
     under subsection (c).''.
       (3) Effective date.--This subsection and the amendments 
     made by this subsection shall take effect on October 1, 2018.

  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The Democratic leader.


                           Amendment No. 1958

       (Purpose: In the nature of a substitute.)

  Mr. SCHUMER. Mr. President, I call up amendment No. 1958 to the 
language proposed to be stricken.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The clerk will report.
  The senior assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

       The Senator from New York [Mr. Schumer] proposes an 
     amendment numbered 1958 to the language proposed to be 
     stricken by amendment No. 1959.

  Mr. SCHUMER. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the reading 
of the amendment be dispensed with.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. Without objection, it is so 
ordered.
  (The amendment is printed in today's Record under ``Text of 
Amendments.'')
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The Senator from Illinois.


                Amendment No. 1955 to Amendment No. 1958

       (Purpose: To provide relief from removal and adjustment of 
     status of certain individuals who are long-term United States 
     residents and who entered the United States before reaching 
     the age of 18, improve border security, foster United States 
     engagement in Central America, and for other purposes.)

  Mr. DURBIN. Mr. President, I call up the Coons amendment No. 1955 to 
the Schumer amendment No. 1958.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The clerk will report.
  The senior assistant legislative clerk read as follows:


[[Page S932]]


  

       The Senator from Illinois [Mr. Durbin], for Mr. Coons, 
     proposes an amendment numbered 1955 to amendment No. 1958.

  Mr. DURBIN. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the reading 
of the amendment be dispensed with.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. Without objection, it is so 
ordered.
  (The amendment is printed in the Record of Tuesday, February 13, 
2018, under ``Text of Amendments.'')


                   Recognition of the Minority Leader

  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The Democratic leader is 
recognized.
  Mr. SCHUMER. Mr. President, as we enter the second day of the debate 
on immigration, everyone should be focused on finding a bill to protect 
the Dreamers and address border security that can get 60 votes. That is 
the ball game.
  The majority leader's desire to vote on an unrelated, partisan 
immigration bill--legislation that is not only silent on Dreamers but 
is silent on border security as well--is not a productive way to begin 
debate.
  Let's get to the crux of the issue. Let Republicans offer whatever 
they want on DACA and border security, and we will do the same. The 
leader supports the proposal by Senator Grassley, which is, 
essentially, the President's plan. Let's vote on that first. We will 
have several bipartisan bills to offer. We should vote on those too.
  Democrats are focused like a laser on finding a bipartisan bill that 
can pass the Senate to protect the Dreamers. Several moderate 
Republicans are working toward that as well. The one person who seems 
most intent on not getting a deal is President Trump.
  President Trump's contribution to this debate has been to put forward 
a proposal that contains a vast curtailment of legal immigration, far 
outside the scope of DACA and border security, and has demanded that 
the Democrats support it. Instead of making a proposal in good faith or 
working with Democrats on a compromise, President Trump is trying to 
force his unpopular, hard-line immigration agenda down the throats of 
the American people by calling it a DACA bill.
  The President's proposal, now the Grassley bill, is so extreme on 
legal immigration that several Republicans have been critical of it, 
including my friends from South Carolina and Arizona. Yet President 
Trump somehow thinks that Democrats would be to blame for not getting a 
deal on DACA because we didn't go blindly along with his partisan 
plan--extreme as it is and with no input from Democrats.
  That will not happen.
  Only in a Kafkaesque, 1984 world could the Democrats be blamed for 
the current predicament on DACA. As much as the President wants to turn 
the world upside down, as much as he wants everyone to just accept what 
he is saying, the American people know better. Everyone here knows that 
President Trump has stood in the way of a bipartisan solution to DACA 
from the very beginning. Let's take a quick look at the history.
  First, it was President Trump who terminated the DACA Program last 
August, not the Democrats and not the Republicans here. Unilaterally, 
we are in this pickle--worse than a pickle--in this bad situation 
because President Trump chose to end the DACA Program last August. That 
stands out above anything else.
  Then President Trump turned his back on not one but two bipartisan 
immigration proposals. I went so far as to put the wall--the 
President's signature campaign issue--on the table for discussion. That 
still did not drive him to a deal.
  Finally, now that we are working hard in the Senate to come up with a 
bipartisan proposal, President Trump is just trying to gum up the 
works. According to reports, President Trump may threaten to veto 
legislation that doesn't match his hard-line demands--``my way or no 
way'' and with no Democratic input. A statement this morning from the 
White House said the President would oppose even a short-term bill to 
protect the Dreamers.
  So who is intent on kicking out these people who know no country but 
America, who work in our factories and offices, who go to our schools, 
who serve in our military? Who is intent on kicking them out? It is not 
the American people, as 90 percent want to support the Dreamers. It is 
not any Democrat and not a good number of Republicans on that side of 
the aisle. It is just the President.
  On three separate occasions, President Trump has stood in the way of 
a bipartisan solution to DACA--a problem he created in the first place. 
Yet the President is in this dream world. He thinks: Oh, I can blame 
the Democrats for the impasse.
  As I said, only in a 1984 world where up is down and black is white 
could this be true. Only in a 1984 world where up is down and black is 
white would the American public blame the Democrats for this. They know 
where Trump stands. They know it. The American people know what is 
going on. They know that this President not only created the problem 
but seems to be against every solution that might pass because it is 
not 100 percent of what he wants.
  If, at the end of this week, we are unable to find a bill that can 
pass--I sincerely hope that is not the case, due to the good efforts of 
so many people on both sides of the aisle--the responsibility will fall 
on the President's shoulders and on those in this body who went along 
with him.
  Bipartisan negotiations are ongoing and are, perhaps, very close to a 
conclusion. Nothing is ever certain given the contentious nature of 
this debate, but I am hopeful that Senators can put the President's 
hard-line demands to the side and come up with a deal that works for 
both parties. If we want to go beyond border security and the DACA 
kids, let's do comprehensive reform. We did it once. It worked pretty 
well in the Senate, but the House blocked it. Let's go back to it. 
First, the issues at hand are the DACA kids and border security. That 
is the only thing that can pass this Chamber--the only thing.
  We need to push through to the finish line. There are only 2 days of 
debate remaining this week. Everyone has to make a final effort to 
reach consensus. That doesn't mean adding new demands or drawing lines 
in the sand. It means being willing to compromise and take yes for an 
answer. If we pass something, it might not be everything that either 
the Democrats want or everything that the Republicans want, but it may 
get the job done for the Dreamers and the overwhelming majority of 
Americans who would like to see them stay in the country.


                          Republican Tax Bill

  Mr. President, on another matter--taxes--our Republican friends 
argued that their massive corporate tax cut was not such a huge 
giveaway to corporate America. They predicted that corporations would 
spend the tax savings on benefits for workers. The evidence is already 
mounting that those predictions were wrong. Since the passage of the 
Republican tax bill, corporations have been pouring billions of dollars 
into stock repurchasing programs, not into significant wage increases 
or other meaningful investments in workers.
  These stock buybacks--this stock repurchasing--which benefit, 
primarily, the people at the top have reached a significant milestone. 
Since the passage of the Republican tax bill, there have been over $100 
billion in stock buybacks. As of last week, corporations had announced 
twice the number of corporate share buybacks as during a similar period 
last year. Let me repeat that. The number of corporate share buybacks 
has doubled since the Republican tax bill passed.
  Why is that so significant?
  It is that share buybacks don't help the average worker. They inflate 
the value of a company's stock, which primarily benefits shareholders, 
not workers. It benefits corporate executives, who are compensated with 
corporate stock, not workers, who are paid by wages and benefits. The 
money corporations spend on repurchasing their stock is money that is 
not being reinvested in worker training, equipment, research, new 
hires, or higher salaries.
  According to analysts at Morgan Stanley, companies that were surveyed 
said they will pass only 13 percent of the Trump tax cut savings on to 
workers in comparison to 43 percent that they will spend on share 
buybacks. For manufacturers, it is even worse: 9 percent to go to 
workers, 47 percent to share buybacks.
  The Republicans made a conscious decision to give corporations and 
the wealthiest Americans the lion's share

[[Page S933]]

of the tax cuts and promised it would trickle down to everyone else. 
Unfortunately, trickle-down never works, and it is not what is 
happening now. Corporate America is doing what is best for corporate 
America, and working America is getting left behind. It goes to show 
you just who President Trump and the Republicans were working for when 
they crafted their tax bill. They gave corporations and the wealthiest 
Americans a huge tax cut and cut out everybody else.
  I yield the floor.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The Senator from Illinois.
  Mr. DURBIN. Mr. President, this is immigration week in the U.S. 
Senate, and we are preparing today's procedural moves to bring bills to 
the floor for consideration as early as today, perhaps tomorrow at the 
latest. It is an unusual time when the Senate is focused on such an 
issue and actual bipartisan amendments and substitutes are being 
offered.
  We are at this point at this moment in time because of a decision by 
President Trump on September 5 of last year when he announced he was 
ending the DACA Program. DACA was a program created by President Obama 
by Executive order, which allowed those who had been brought to the 
United States as children, infants, and toddlers to be able to stay 
legally in the United States on a temporary visa renewable every 2 
years. It was called DACA, and 780,000 young people stepped up and paid 
the filing fee of almost $500, went through a criminal background check 
and an interview and received DACA protection. They then went on with 
their lives, with 90 percent of them going to work or to school, 
enlisting in the military--undocumented in America, willing to hold up 
their hands and take an oath that they would die for America. That is 
how much they love this country. Twenty thousand of them went to work 
as school teachers across the United States of America. Perhaps they 
are teaching your children or grandchildren today. They are doing 
important things in this country. But President Trump announced last 
September 5 that the program that protects them and allows them to work 
will end.
  Then he challenged us. He said to the Senate and the House: Do 
something about it. Pass a law. Isn't that what you are there for? The 
President is right. That is our job.
  This week we are going to try to pass a law to end this crisis, which 
is going to reach a head on March 5 of this year when the DACA Program 
officially ends and 1,000 young people a day lose their protection. We 
have less than 3 weeks. So we are going to move today, I hope, or 
tomorrow or this week, at some point to consider some alternatives to 
solve this problem.
  I am sorry to say that there is no plan in the U.S. House of 
Representatives to even address the problem--none. I don't understand 
it. They know that lives hang in the balance, and they know that 
overwhelmingly the American people want to give DACA and the Dreamers a 
chance. The numbers come rolling in; 75, 80, 85 percent of Americans 
agree that these young people should be given a chance to earn their 
way to legal status and citizenship. Even 60 percent of those who voted 
for President Trump agree with what I just said. It is a popular 
political issue on both sides, and it also is the right thing to do.
  What the President has proposed as his alternative, from my point of 
view, is unacceptable. Let me tell you why. Two weeks ago the White 
House released a one-page framework on immigration reform and border 
security. The White House claimed that this is a compromise because it 
includes a path to citizenship for Dreamers--some of them. That, of 
course, as I mentioned, is supported by a majority of Americans. The 
reality is that the Trump plan would put the administration's entire 
hard-line immigration agenda on the backs of these young people. These 
young, DACA-protected people are being held as political hostages for 
President Trump's hard-line immigration agenda.
  For example, the White House wants to dramatically reduce legal 
immigration by prohibiting American citizens from sponsoring their 
parents, siblings, and children as immigrants. We are talking about 
literally millions of relatives of American citizens who entered this 
system legally and are following our immigration laws. Some have been 
waiting for as long as 20 years to immigrate to the United States.
  The conservative Cato Institute says the following about President 
Trump's proposal:

       In the most likely scenario, the new plan [from the Trump 
     administration] would cut the number of legal immigrants by 
     up to 44 percent or a half million immigrants annually--the 
     largest policy-driven immigration cut since the 1920s. 
     Compared to current law, it would exclude nearly 22 million 
     people from the opportunity to immigrate legally to the 
     United States over the next five decades.

  You have to go back in history to a time when there was a proposal 
that passed on the floor of this Chamber that cut as many legal 
immigrants to the United States. The year was 1924. Calvin Coolidge was 
President of the United States. We had just seen the end of World War 
I. There was a growing fear that because of all of the damage that was 
done in Europe, Europeans would come to the United States. There was 
also a concern that the wrong people were coming to the United States, 
in the eyes of some of the Members of Congress.
  The Immigration Act of 1924 passed, and it set quotas for countries, 
and it set quotas for people. It was expressly designed to exclude 
certain people from around the world from entering the United States of 
America. It was a notorious piece of legislation. Those who were to be 
excluded from America included people from Italy, Eastern Europe, 
Japan, Asia, and Jewish people. That was the immigration policy of the 
United States of America because of that bill in 1924. That is the last 
time this Chamber has made such a dramatic cut in legal immigration to 
America. It was a source of embarrassment for decades. The United 
States established quotas and said: We want America to look a lot 
different than it would look if other immigrants came to this country.
  Thankfully, in 1965, it was changed. Thankfully, we gave up the 
quotas that had been criticized roundly as being insensitive to the 
realities of the world population and the reality of the population of 
America.
  Now the Trump administration wants to cut legal immigration to the 
United States again, by 44 percent, the biggest cut--as the Cato 
Institute tells us--since that horrible bill was passed in 1924.

  Let me tell you what else the Trump immigration proposal would do. It 
would create an unaccountable slush fund of $25 billion of American 
taxpayers' money for a border wall that, as I remember correctly, 
Mexico was supposed to pay for--$25 billion. I have to double check, 
but I think that is almost the annual appropriation for the National 
Institutes of Health. The President wants $25 billion and wants no 
strings attached. He wants to be able to spend it where, when, and how 
he wants. That is an invitation for fraud and waste. It is an 
invitation for money to be spent for something other than its purpose. 
It is an invitation for taxpayers to be the ultimate losers with this 
slush fund for President Trump's famous Mexican wall.
  The President's proposal on immigration, in the midst of the worst 
refugee crisis on record in the world, is now calling for fast-track 
deportations without due process of women and children fleeing gang and 
sexual violence. I can't tell you how many times we have had this 
conversation with members of the Trump administration. They create a 
scenario. The scenario is of a 6-year-old child who is swooped up in 
some Central American country. The parents give thousands of dollars, 
their life savings, to a smuggler who says: I will get this child to 
the border of the United States. The child is then taken off by the 
smuggler in a car or truck or bus to the border. The child then comes 
out of the car, is pointed toward one of our Federal employees with the 
Border Patrol, and the child walks up and hands a piece of paper to the 
Border Patrol agent with the name of someone in the United States. That 
process then unfolds, and the child ultimately, in many cases, ends up 
with that relative while a decision is made about the status of the 
child.
  Is there exploitation in this system? You bet there is. Is there 
abuse in this system? For sure. Is there actual human trafficking 
taking place? Yes.

[[Page S934]]

Are atrocities committed against these children in the course of this 
journey? All true. Should we be dedicated to cleaning this up? Sign me 
up, on a bipartisan basis.
  Let me tell you another scenario, another story that has a different 
origin than turning over a child to a smuggler. Let me tell you about 
cases we know of in Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala where, because 
of the rampant crime, gang activity, and violence that takes place, 
parents, desperate to save their children--some of whom have daughters 
who have been victims of rape by these gangs--send them to the United 
States in the hope that they can save their lives. They show up at the 
border, having lived in fear of this violence in their countries, and 
they are accepted into the United States to determine whether that fear 
can be established in a hearing.
  These are two different cases--a little child being exploited by a 
smuggler, a young girl escaping violence and perhaps death because her 
parents have nowhere to turn to save her life. Should we treat them 
both the same? I don't think so. Historically, we have said that when 
it comes to asylum seekers, who come to this country with a credible 
fear for their own lives, the United States has given them a chance to 
be protected. We have said that over and over again. We said it to the 
Cubans who were escaping Fidel Castro. We have said it to the Soviet 
Jews who wanted to have freedom of religion and came to the United 
States, believing this was the only chance they had in the world.
  The Trump immigration proposal does not make a clear distinction on 
those two cases. In fact, what it does is end up with fast-track 
deportations without due process. Accepting the Trump approach will 
literally return many of these folks who have come to our border to 
harm and in some cases death.
  There are fast-track deportations in the Trump proposal without due 
process for millions who have overstayed their visas. An estimated 40 
percent of the 11 million undocumented fit in this category. So even if 
they have no criminal record, without considering their legal claims to 
remain in the United States, they would be deported. It dramatically 
cuts immigration from sub-Saharan African countries.
  We have a diversity visa program. It is far from perfect, but it is a 
program that was created years ago, so countries that do not have an 
opportunity to send people to the United States for legal immigration 
would have a chance. Immigrants who come from these countries are 
limited in number. They have to go through the background checks, 
criminal background checks, biometric investigations--all of the 
investigations and interviews that we would expect in order to make 
sure we do everything humanly possible to cull out those who would be 
any danger to the United States. They face that same scrutiny, and they 
should. Many of them are rejected. They can't make the case for their 
lives and what they have done with them, and they are not given a 
chance to come. The President wants to eliminate the diversity visa 
program. For those living in sub-Saharan African countries, huge 
countries, about 12,000 to 15,000 come to the United States each year 
through this program. By eliminating this program, the Trump 
administration sadly is going to deny those immigrants from Africa even 
a chance to apply for this opportunity.
  In the past, many Democrats have been willing to support some of the 
President's proposals, changes in our immigration system, eliminating 
the diversity visa lottery, but when we made that offer 5 years ago, it 
was part of comprehensive immigration reform with give and take and 
compromise that tried to make sense out of senseless immigration laws.
  In 2013, a Democratic-led Senate passed a comprehensive immigration 
reform bill with a strong bipartisan vote of 68 to 32. The bill was a 
product of months of negotiations, with committee and floor debate. 
Unfortunately, the Republican leadership in the House of 
Representatives refused to even consider the bill. Now we are being 
asked to accept the administration's proposal with no conditions, no 
compromise, no give and take; rather, take it or leave it.
  Democrats have shown they want to comprehensively fix our broken 
immigration system, but right now we have to fix our focus on the DACA 
crisis created by President Trump with his announcement of September 5. 
That has to be our priority.
  In the next day or two, we expect the so-called Grassley proposal, 
which is the Trump immigration plan, to come to the floor. I want to 
say for the record, Democrats support comprehensive immigration reform, 
but we will not stand by and allow Dreamers to be held political 
hostage to the administration's entire immigration agenda.
  I yield the floor.
  I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The clerk will call the roll.
  The senior assistant legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. MENENDEZ. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order 
for the quorum call be rescinded.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. Without objection, it is so 
ordered.
  Mr. MENENDEZ. Mr. President, I come to the floor out of great concern 
for America's Dreamers, whose futures hinge on the ability of this body 
to keep its word and get something done. I want to be clear whom we are 
talking about when we talk about Dreamers. We aren't talking about 
criminals. We aren't talking about terrorists. We aren't talking about 
``bad hombres.'' We are talking about kids as American as apple pie. As 
I often say, the only country they call home is the United States. The 
only flag they pledge allegiance to is that of the American flag. The 
only national anthem they know how to sing is the ``Star-Spangled 
Banner.''
  We are talking about 800,000 young people who were brought to this 
country as children and were able to obtain legal protection under the 
Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program, known as DACA. These 
kids put enormous faith in our government. They came out of the 
shadows, they passed background checks, and they registered with our 
government--all to get a 2-year renewable work permit and protection 
from deportation.
  Even the Cato Institute, which is a conservative think tank, says 
that deporting Dreamers--91 percent of whom are gainfully employed--
would hurt America's economy. At the same time, we are also talking 
about thousands of additional Dreamers who were eligible for DACA but 
didn't apply. Some couldn't afford the cost and others were still 
working through the lengthy application process. These are the Dreamers 
the White House Chief of Staff John Kelly called lazy asses. Well, Mr. 
Kelly, here is what you don't understand: The reason they didn't apply 
is not because they were lazy. In fact, in many cases, they didn't 
apply because they were afraid--afraid of people like you. They were 
afraid that if they came out of the shadows and registered with the 
government, they would end up on a short list for deportation. What is 
depressing is that this administration's actions have proven them 
right. Now DACA recipients and undocumented Dreamers alike fear they 
have a target on their back, and that is because President Trump put an 
expiration date on their dreams when he decided to end DACA.
  Now, let me be clear, DACA was never perfect, and it was never a 
replacement for truly comprehensive immigration reform. Make no 
mistake, we still need comprehensive immigration reform, and I am 
committed as ever to that cause--a cause I have spent the better part 
of my congressional career trying to achieve. I was a member of the 
Gang of 8 in the Senate back in 2013 when a bipartisan supermajority in 
the Senate passed the most historic reforms to our immigration system 
since the days of President Ronald Reagan, only to die in the House of 
Representatives without even a vote, but that debate is for another 
day. That debate is for what President Trump called phase 2.
  This week, we are not here to debate comprehensive immigration 
reform. We are not here to debate the numerous types of visas that 
exist under U.S. law. We are not here to debate how mayors run their 
cities or how police officers do their jobs. We are here to protect 
Dreamers. We are here to address a crisis that President Trump started 
last September when he ended DACA. That is what this week's debate

[[Page S935]]

is all about--it is about protecting hard-working, upstanding Dreamers 
across America from being deported to countries they haven't stepped 
foot in since they were in diapers.
  Now, many of my colleagues have met Dreamers from their States in 
recent years, and they know the lion's share of these kids can't even 
remember coming here--only growing up here. For the Dreamers who do 
remember arriving here, they certainly didn't arrive through any 
decision of their own. They were babies, toddlers, and very young 
children, and I challenge my colleagues to think of any decision of 
consequence they made when they were babies, toddlers, and very young 
children. I bet you didn't decide what town you lived in, where your 
parents worked, or what kind of status you had.
  When we talk about Dreamers, we are talking about kids who have grown 
up American in every sense of the word. We are talking about 22,000 New 
Jerseyans like Parthiv Patel, who came to New Jersey from India when he 
was 5 years old. He gained DACA status in 2012. He graduated from 
Drexel Law School in 2016, and he became the first Dreamer admitted to 
the New Jersey Bar in 2018.
  We are also talking about students like Christopher Rios Martine, a 
constituent of mine who came here from Colombia at the age of 2. Today 
he is a junior at Rutgers University with a 3.74 GPA. He is president 
of the Management Information Systems Association, and he is interning 
at Colgate-Palmolive. Christopher said: ``I am proud to be a DACA 
recipient and I plan on contributing as much to this country as I 
possibly can.''
  As another Dreamer from New Jersey, Sara Mora, recently wrote: 
Without DACA her life has become ``one big question mark''--the 
question of whether this Congress will act. Will we protect Dreamers 
who have become integral to our communities, many who are teaching in 
our schools, who are treating our patients, who are serving proudly in 
the military of the United States--many are wearing the uniform of the 
United States, risking their lives on behalf of our country, and yet we 
talk about deporting them--and many who are starting families of their 
own? That is right. Nearly one-quarter of DACA recipients are the 
parents of U.S.-born American children.
  That is whom we are talking about this week. We are not talking about 
criminals. We are not talking about terrorists. We are not talking 
about gangbangers or drug dealers. We are talking about Dreamers. They 
are not undocumented immigrants, from my perspective; they are 
undocumented Americans who have proven themselves worthy of the 
American dream. Yet the administration slapped an arbitrary expiration 
date on their dream, creating a crisis that Congress needs to solve.

  I took President Trump at his word when he said he wanted to treat 
Dreamers with heart, just as I took Leader McConnell at his word when 
he said this week would be about protecting them from deportation.
  Now, as I listen to many of my Republican colleagues on the Senate 
floor, I am hearing less and less about Dreamers and more and more 
about spending tens of billions of taxpayer dollars on a wall President 
Trump promised Mexico would pay for. Considering the Trump 
administration's own report noting that illegal border crossings from 
Mexico have dropped to their lowest level in nearly 50 years, you have 
to question the wisdom of a multibillion-dollar wall--a wall between 
the United States and a country that serves as our second largest 
export market in the world for American goods and services, as Mexican 
consumers and businesses buy American goods and services that support 
jobs created here at home.
  Likewise, I am hearing a whole lot about politically loaded terms 
like ``merit-based immigration'' and ``chain migration.'' These aren't 
terms you find in our laws. They are political catchphrases designed to 
incite fear and push policies that forever change how legal immigration 
works in the United States. The more insidious, of course, is the term 
``chain migration.'' I am appalled when I hear my colleagues talking 
about chain migration, just like I am appalled that the media--even the 
so-called liberal media--has adopted this phrase as if it is actually a 
legitimate term, and I can't be the only one who thinks the term 
``chain migration'' is downright insulting to the millions of Americans 
whose ancestors were actually brought to this country in chains.
  Now, I have heard a lot about family values from my Republican 
colleagues throughout my time in Congress. The Republican Party has 
long claimed to be the party of so-called family values. Well, ``chain 
migration'' is a term that dehumanizes families. When we want to 
dehumanize something, we create an inanimate object, but this chain is 
about a mother and a father and a son and a daughter. It is not an 
inanimate object, but it is a dehumanizing term.
  It is a term designed to make our system of legal immigration and 
family reunification sound threatening and illogical, but there is 
nothing threatening about uniting mothers and fathers, and there is 
nothing more common sense than uniting brothers and sisters and sons 
and daughters. They are not linked by chains. They are bound by blood 
and held together by love.
  Families are the essence of American values in our society. Families 
are the glue that builds strong communities--the foundation of our 
country. Yet some of my Republican colleagues act as if the nuclear 
family is a concept that has an expiration date. Well, I loved my 
daughter since the day she was born and the day she turned 21 and the 
day she turned 30, the same as I do my son. I didn't love them less 
with each passing year. I don't love them any less now that they have 
gotten married; in fact, I love them more.
  So Americans need to know that when Republicans speak of ending chain 
migration, they are talking about ending the legal right of U.S. 
citizens to legally sponsor family members in our immigration system. 
It is not chain migration; it is family reunification. That is what 
America is all about. That is what immigration policy for the past 
century has been about--keeping families together, not tearing them 
apart.
  The reality is, most Americans are, in some ways, the beneficiary of 
family reunification. Without it, our country would be a very different 
place. End family reunification, and we would never have seen the 
leadership of individuals like Colin Powell, a general and Secretary of 
State. That is right. His parents wouldn't have been able to come here 
without the big bad chain migration that my colleagues in the majority 
decry today.
  End family reunification and suddenly billion-dollar American 
technology companies like Kingston Technology would have never existed. 
Before John Tu was a billion-dollar businessman, he was a self-
described mediocre student from China. He would have never come to 
America if it were not for the sponsorship of his U.S. citizen sister. 
He wasn't skilled when he got here, and yet he built a groundbreaking 
company.
  So let's get real. When President Trump professes his support for 
merit-based immigration, he doesn't have a real plan for allowing a 
million engineers and inventors from around the world to come to the 
United States. He is talking about cutting legal immigration by nearly 
50 percent. That is a policy with disastrous implications for the 
future of this country when you consider basic economic facts.
  Any credible economist will tell you that without steady immigration, 
America's global competitiveness will suffer, and we will fall far 
behind much larger countries like China, Pakistan, and India. According 
to a Forbes magazine article, even President Donald Trump is a product 
of chain migration. That is right. Friedrich Trump, Donald Trump's 
grandfather, was able to come to the United States from Germany, with 
no English-speaking ability and no merit-based skills. Why? Because his 
sister was already in the United States and claimed him as part of 
family reunification. You get to be President of the United States 
because of chain migration.
  If Republicans were being honest, they would call their term of 
``chain migration'' what it really is. They would call it family 
reunification, but they don't want to call it family reunification 
because they don't want to own up to their intention, which is to strip 
U.S. citizens of the right to sponsor their brothers and sisters, 
mothers

[[Page S936]]

and fathers, and adult children as immigrants.
  I ask my colleagues to please give it a rest. If you want to have a 
debate about the merits of our immigration system, we can have that 
debate, but that debate over comprehensive immigration reform is not 
the debate we should have this week. This debate is about whether we 
will do right by American Dreamers, about whether we will listen to the 
voices of the American people who overwhelmingly want us to solve this 
crisis.
  According to the latest polls out this week from Quinnipiac 
University, 81 percent of Americans support giving Dreamers a path to 
citizenship. Yet, week after week, month after month, Dreamers have 
languished in uncertainty. Republicans didn't let us protect them in 
September or October or November or December or January. Yet, 
throughout all this time wasted, I hear my colleagues in the majority 
say such nice things about Dreamers--how talented they are, how hopeful 
they are, how important they are.
  I say to them today that it is getting harder and harder to take your 
commitment to Dreamers seriously when, at every opportunity you have to 
do something, you do nothing. Instead, it is beginning to look like 
President Trump--the person responsible for ending DACA--has enablers 
in Congress who have been intent on deporting Dreamers from day one. If 
that is not the case, now is the time to prove it because March 5 is 
just around the corner. Come March, America's Dreamers will see their 
dreams extinguished, replaced with deportation orders to nations they 
have never called home. So far, there are 19,000 already out of status, 
and after March 5, there will be 1,000 a day.
  If my colleagues want to have a debate about comprehensive 
immigration reform, we can have that debate some other time but not 
today, not this week, not until we protect Dreamers living in fear of 
deportation due to President Trump's reckless decisions--a President 
who once said about Dreamers that ``we're going to work something out 
that is going to make people happy and proud.'' Well, the polls show 
deporting Dreamers will not make Americans happy and proud.
  The time for talk is over. The time for kind words is over. The time 
for excuses is over. So, this week, Congress needs to take action. It 
is time we let America see who stands with Dreamers and who is 
complicit in their potential deportation. These young men and women 
have shown incredible courage and strength in the face of adversity and 
uncertainty. They were handed a crisis, and they created a movement. 
They shared their stories and their dreams, and, in doing so, they have 
captured the hearts of the American people.
  I urge my colleagues in the Senate not to break America's heart 
because our hearts are bigger as a country and our future is brighter 
when Dreamers in this country stay right where they belong.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Sullivan). The Senator from North 
Carolina.


                            Valentine's Day

  Mr. TILLIS. Mr. President, in a moment, I am going to talk about the 
immigration debate we are going to have here.
  Before I do that, though, I want to recognize that this is 
Valentine's Day. I happen to be several hundred miles away from my 
sweetheart, but I want to wish my wife a happy Valentine's Day. I made 
her a little card. I am sure I probably just violated a rule, but I 
don't think anybody can fire me. I want my wife to know I love her and 
wish I was with her.
  Now, Mr. President, I want to talk a little about immigration reform. 
We just heard a discussion. I tell you, sometimes I think I teleport 
from this Chamber to the Kennedy Center because there are more 
theatrics going on here than you can find down there on any given day.
  Let me give you one example of that. The whole indignant position 
that the Member from New Jersey just had on ``chain migration'' and 
somehow that mean Republicans came up with this term because we wanted 
to make a point. Demographers came up with this term decades ago. 
People on the other side of the aisle even have references to chain 
migration in bills they proposed. End the theatrics. Solve this 
problem.
  Let's talk about the President's framework. I was presiding just 
before I got up here. I heard the word ``hard-line'' used--the hard-
line demand of President Trump. I don't agree with everything President 
Trump has done. In fact, I said a year and a half ago--and I got 
criticized for it--that when you sit down and talk border patrol and 
talk homeland security, you are going to find out you don't need a 
large, monolithic wall from the Pacific Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico.
  After the President was elected and after he got into office, he 
listened to homeland security and border patrol, and he came up with a 
plan that isn't a long, monolithic wall across the southern border. It 
is a strategic plan that actually lets us improve the security of the 
homeland along the northern and southern borders. It is a plan that 
tries to confiscate tons of drugs that are poisoning Americans in the 
tens of thousands of every year. It is a plan that makes sure gang 
members are more likely to be incarcerated when they cross the border 
illegally and less likely to go into the very communities that many of 
the people who immigrate to this country go into. It is a plan to make 
those communities safer.
  It is a plan to make sure we know the thousands of people that cross 
the border illegally are not carrying illicit drugs in a truck or car 
or a wheel well, the way they do it today, because it is using 
technology to be able to search more vehicles to make sure our homeland 
is safe.
  It is also a plan that shows more compassion than President Obama's 
DACA plan. Right now, they are saying: Let's keep DACA going. Well, 
there are 690,000 people who are in DACA. Their future is 
uncertain because it is an Executive order. It doesn't have the force 
of law. It could possibly be challenged by the court. The President 
decided on September 15 of last year, Congress do your job. You have 
been talking about immigration reform for two decades. We have an 
arguably illegal Executive order by President Obama that President 
Trump kept in place for about a year, and then he said: I am going to 
give you all 6 months to do your job and come up with something that 
has enduring value.

  The DACA proposal only provided the illegally present persons who 
came to this country--through the decisions of an adult--some certainty 
that they wouldn't be deported. It doesn't give them any certainty in 
terms of a path to citizenship. People said the President has a hard-
line plan. DACA allows 690,000 people who signed up for it to be here 
and, hopefully, not have that decision thrown out by the courts or have 
the President rescind it.
  What we just heard from three or four Members on the other side of 
the aisle is that the President's hard-line plan is to have nearly 
three times as many people with a path to citizenship, not a piece of 
paper that hopefully will be in place for the time you spend in the 
United States but citizenship. So the President's hard-line plan 
actually legalizes about two and a half times as many people, not to 
just let them be here present, to have legal status but have a path to 
citizenship. That is hard-line?
  I am not sure the President was there when he was running for office, 
but he listened. He recognizes he wants to be the President who gets 
something done, and he is willing to accept the criticism from people 
on my side of the aisle who may not support a path to citizenship. I 
do, and the President does.
  I find it remarkable that somebody would say a President, who has 
endorsed a bill to provide a path to citizenship to 1.8 million 
people--two and a half times more than President Obama provided a 
temporary and passing status to--is hard-line.
  Border security. Why is border security important? Is it just purely 
a hard-line deportation force sending people out? No. I already talked 
about, No. 1, hundreds of millions of doses of heroin, fentanyl, and 
other illicit drugs come across our border every year. We simply do not 
have the people, technology, and infrastructure to interdict them. Of 
the $25 billion, about $18 billion of it would be spent for border 
security. About 10 percent to 15 percent

[[Page S937]]

of that is on the northern border. The remainder is on the southern 
border. Some of that will be spent on wall structures.
  When all is said and done, less than half of the 2,300 miles will 
have a wall structure. The rest will be spent on training additional 
personnel. If you have ever gone to a border crossing, you know the 
long lines they have there. This is actually creating technology that 
has low-intensity x rays where you could drive a vehicle through. The 
Border Patrol folks can identify human smugglers, human traffickers, 
and drug smugglers without ever having the person get out of the car. 
That is what the border security plan is focused on as well. There are 
wall structures where they make sense. They don't make sense along 
about half of the border.
  Let me tell you about the humanitarian case for this, which I find 
remarkable no one on the other side of the aisle will bring up. I went 
to Texas last year. I went along the southern border. I was on the Rio 
Grande, on the Border Patrol boats, on horseback, and at night I took 
ATVs around. I heard a lot of stories by a lot of people, including 
property owners. Over the last 20 years, 10,000 people have died trying 
to cross our border on U.S. soil. We have no earthly idea how many tens 
of thousands of people die just trying to get there. So 10,000 people 
died over the last 20 years because we didn't know where they were. 
They were on American soil, but we didn't know where they were. About 
1,000 of them were children. If that is not a case for needing to know 
who is crossing the border and where they are--even if they may get 
deported if they don't have a legitimate claim to asylum but have this 
threat to their safety--then I don't know what else is. I don't see how 
border security is hard-line when you look at the facts--not the 
theater but the facts.
  I think that second pillar of the President's proposal is balanced. 
It is less than what he originally wanted, but it makes sense, and it 
shows a lot of movement on his part. Again, two and a half times the 
number of people are actually getting a path to citizenship--more than 
the DACA Executive order proposed--and it has border security that 
makes sense and is no longer this idea of a monolithic wall.
  We heard somebody say there is a dramatic cut to legal immigration; 
that the promise we made to everybody who is in line because of a 
family relationship is going to be broken. That is utter nonsense. 
There is no proposal like that on the table. The fact is, there are 
about 3.9 million people in the backlog who, if the President's 
proposal is accepted, will get to this country in half the time it 
takes today. There are about 3.9 million people waiting to come to this 
country because of a family relationship who we have proposed--that the 
President has proposed--should be able to get here sooner.
  The diversity lottery is also something, I think, people have been 
misled or they are trying to mislead you. I will leave it to you to 
decide. The diversity lottery is not ending. This actually comes up 
with a reasonable way to use those 50,000 green cards in a way that 
lets us draw down the backlog sooner--instead of having somebody wait 
17 years or 20 years to get into the country, maybe 8 or 9, but then it 
is also with a focus on the underrepresented countries. There are many 
countries in Africa--about 15,000--that we would like to make sure they 
have an opportunity every year to come to this country. They are from 
an underrepresented country. We have already made proposals that said 
we are open to other proposals to make that be a part of how the 
diversity lottery gets settled. So 50,000 will continue to come. When 
we say we are ending the diversity lottery, we are not saying we will 
end the entry of 50,000 people; we are talking about modernizing it.
  The last time we did any major immigration bill, I was 5 years old. I 
think it is about time to look at how the world has changed and maybe 
open your eyes and open your hearts to a better way to do it that 
benefits the person trying to come to this country and benefits our 
country as a result of their entry. I think it can be a win-win.
  The last thing on chain migration is, I want to go back and find 
everybody who voted for bills in the past, and they voted for a bill 
with legislative language in it that referred to chain migration. I am 
sick of that kind of garbage on the Senate floor. That is just 
misleading. Chain migration is just a process that has been used in the 
past--not only by our country but other countries--to kind of link 
people together.

  I am absolutely sympathetic with some of the things the gentleman 
from New Jersey said, but to say that this is some hateful, divisive 
term is not paying a whole lot of attention to your job. I have only 
been here 3 years. Many of these people who are here voted for language 
that had chain migration in it, and now they are saying it is something 
the hateful folks in our marketing departments created to be divisive. 
That is just untrue.
  Now the last thing. When we are talking about legal immigration in 
this country--we immigrate about 1 million to 1.1 million people a year 
to this country. I don't have a problem with that number. If I had 
Members on the other side of the aisle, some of my colleagues, say, 
``Thom, we want to try to maintain that same amount of immigration over 
time,'' I would say that I am open to it. Some of my colleagues I have 
worked with on this bill may not be. But the way we go about doing it 
needs to be modernized.
  How many times have I heard that when we have a foreign national here 
who graduates with an engineering degree or some degree in STEM, that 
we should just staple a green card to the back of their diploma--how 
many times have we heard that?--because we need high-end workers. We 
need welders. We need carpenters. We need plumbers. We need people to 
come to this country to fill jobs, or at some point, our economic 
growth is going to be limited by the number of resources we have for 
those jobs. Our unemployment is going down. The demand for the workers 
is there. But we have an immigration system where about three-fourths 
of everybody who comes to this country comes purely because of a family 
relationship. I bet that if we dig into it, many of them actually could 
qualify on the basis of merit, but right now, it is just a random 
selection that doesn't really tie to our needs as a nation and for our 
economic growth or for our economic security.
  I believe that if we get the immigration policy right, over the next 
10 years, we will be building a case to have more legal immigration 
here, more than the 1 million or 1.1 million, but if we don't fix this, 
we are not going to fix the underlying problem with our immigration 
system.
  I actually didn't plan on speaking. I just grabbed a couple of these 
slides so that I could talk about it. But it is very important to me 
for us to--I don't like being a part of an organization that talks a 
lot and doesn't get anything done, and over the last 17 years, that is 
all these folks have been doing. They say: Reelect me. I promise you 
that next year, I will get immigration reform done. Next year, I will 
file the Dream Act, and we will get it done.
  Well, guess what. It hasn't gotten done under a Republican 
administration. President Bush was sympathetic to this issue. He 
couldn't get it done. Congress couldn't get it done.
  President Obama comes in and says: I am going to fix immigration. 
President Obama had the votes to pass ObamaCare. There was a time in 
this Chamber when not a single Republican vote was necessary to pass a 
bill out of here, right? So if you don't need a single Republican vote 
in Congress, on the House or the Senate side, why didn't you get it 
done? Because I don't think you have taken the time to construct 
something that makes sense, that is compassionate, that is responsible, 
and that will have the enduring value of law. So now is the time to get 
it done, and the only way we are going to get it done is with 
bipartisan cooperation.
  If you don't like some of the elements of the President's framework 
and you set a hammer to it, fold your hands, and say: If you will not 
vote on mine, I will not vote on yours--look at this and tell us how we 
can improve it. Tell us what we need to do to get a vote. Tell us what 
we can do to moderate this. To call this a hardline bill is absurd. It 
is theatrics. It is the kind of stuff that has prevented us from 
getting things done for the last 17 years.
  I hope people will have an honest discussion and debate. I hope 
people will come down here, offer all the amendments they want to, and 
I hope they

[[Page S938]]

will be mature enough, if they fail, to move on to the next one because 
I, for one, want to provide certainty to the DACA population.
  I say to the Presiding Officer, you know better than I because you 
are in the Marine Reserves. There are 900 people serving in the 
military today--that is more than a battalion, right? We have more than 
900 DACA recipients serving in the military. I want to file this bill. 
I want to get this bill to the President's desk and say to them: 
Welcome to this country. Thank you for your service. I can't wait to go 
to your ceremony where you swear the oath as an American citizen.
  That is what we can do this week. But I guarantee you, anybody who 
sits here and says that the President's proposal is unfair and 
insincere and hardline is playing politics. It makes me wonder if some 
of them would just as soon have this be the ``if you elect me next 
year, I promise I will fix this problem'' campaign speech versus take 
this off the table, provide them certainty, and do something different 
for a change.
  Finally, I started by wishing my wife a happy Valentine's Day. When I 
get into these speeches--I worked in business most of my career. I 
haven't been in politics very long. I get very frustrated with the lack 
of production and with the lack of results. But, Sweetie, I am not mad. 
I just get a little bit intense when I talk about an issue where the 
solution is within reach. I am not mad. I am frustrated with the 
Members of the U.S. Senate who don't see the opportunity to seize this 
moment and get it done.
  Mr. President, thank you for the opportunity. I probably went long, 
and I apologize to anybody else who may be waiting to speak. But this 
is the week to get it done. This is the Congress to get it done. This 
is the President who has given us a historic opportunity. I hope we 
seize the day.
  Thank you, Mr. President.
  I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. LEAHY. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order for 
the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  Mr. LEAHY. Mr. President, the Senate is debating the fate of our 
Nation's Dreamers this week. Everywhere I go, people recognize the 
uncontestable truth that underpins our discussion: We are all a nation 
of immigrants. Unless you are Native American, you come from a line of 
people who come from somewhere else. More than in any other country on 
Earth, this simple fact is a defining characteristic of our national 
identity. Throughout our history, immigrant communities have greatly 
enriched our Nation; their individual stories have become the American 
story. Out of many, we have become one.
  My maternal grandparents emigrated from Italy, began a business, 
hired a lot of people, and were pillars of the community. My wife's 
parents emigrated from French-speaking Canada and also owned a 
business. She was born in Vermont. Yesterday, we buried my wife's 
uncle, an immigrant from Canada who started off as an $8-a-week clerk 
at a shoe store. He was buried with honors at the age of 100 yesterday, 
and people talked about the $20 million or $30 million he has given to 
philanthropic causes in Vermont--this $8-a-week immigrant clerk at a 
shoe store.
  I think sometimes we forget who we are. In the late 1800s we passed 
laws excluding Chinese immigrants. During World War II, we turned away 
Jewish refugees fleeing the Holocaust--turned them away at the shores 
of our country--and many went back to die in the gas chambers. We know 
today that these were tragic mistakes, fueled by our own ill-informed, 
xenophobic rhetoric. Mistakes were made, but they must never be 
repeated.
  Yet now, in 2018, I am concerned that we are hearing echoes of past 
mistakes. Anti-immigrant voices, armed with the same shameful 
fearmongering, are attempting a comeback in our country. In recent 
months, Dreamers have been regularly disparaged. Some have even 
suggested that Dreamers pose a risk of terrorism or have links to 
international drug trafficking.
  These absurd depictions would be laughable if they weren't so 
damaging, especially to those of us who remember one of the biggest 
terrorist attacks on our country, in Oklahoma City by Timothy McVeigh, 
who was not an immigrant; he grew up there and was born there. 
Thankfully, most Americans know better. Dreamers are not threats to our 
national security; not a single one--not a single one--has been 
suspected of terrorist activities. Nor do Dreamers present a threat to 
public safety. Far from it. By definition, Dreamers are law-abiding 
strivers who seek only to contribute to our country. Brought here as 
children, Dreamers are now our neighbors, our first responders, our 
teachers, our medical personnel. Nearly 1,000 have served in our Armed 
Forces, risking their lives to defend the only country they have ever 
known as home.
  I will never forget one Dreamer who wrote to me last year. Dr. Juan 
Conde is a DACA recipient. He is a resident of Vermont. He was born in 
Mexico and brought to the United States as a young child by his mother. 
In 2007, tragically, his mother died of cancer. Showing remarkable 
courage and determination for a young man, Dr. Conde was motivated by 
this personal tragedy to help cancer patients like his mother. He 
ultimately obtained a Ph.D. in cancer research from the University of 
Texas.
  But as accomplished as he already was, Dr. Conde was not satisfied 
with just studying cancer. He wanted to treat the people suffering with 
and battling the disease. Every one of us in this Chamber knows 
somebody who has suffered from and battled cancer, and many have died.
  But only after he enrolled in DACA was Dr. Conde able to attend 
medical school, and he is currently doing that. He is studying oncology 
at the University of Vermont's Larner College of Medicine. Dr. Conde 
hopes to spend his life in the United States treating cancer patients 
and researching to find a cure for the disease. This Vermonter--and I 
think all Americans would agree--believes that America is a better 
place with Dr. Conde in it.
  There are hundreds of thousands of Dreamers just like Dr. Conde, all 
with the potential to contribute to our communities and to our country. 
To deny them these opportunities because they were brought here as 
children would be as senseless as it is cruel.
  We are better than that. And this week, we have an opportunity to 
prove it. I am proud of those in the Senate, both Democrats and 
Republicans, who are engaged in good-faith negotiations over proposals 
to protect our Dreamers and improve our border security. I sincerely 
believe that we can find a path to 60 votes, and I hope the Republican 
leadership will let us.
  The Majority Leader's decision yesterday to seek to open up the 
debate with a vote on a poison pill amendment about so-called sanctuary 
cities--which has nothing to do with either Dreamers or border 
security--was less than a helpful start. These kinds of attempts to 
score political points stand in stark contrast to the bipartisan search 
done by leading Republicans and Democrats behind the scenes for a 
solution. As the most senior Member of this body, it is my hope that 
all Senators will focus on a bipartisan solution, not on just divisive 
distractions.
  I respect this institution as much as anybody. For 43 years, I have 
been here and I have seen--and I hope contributed to--the good that can 
be accomplished. I have often said that at its best the Senate can and 
should serve as the conscience of the Nation. But it can only do so 
when we put aside our own self-interest, and we work across the aisle 
in the spirit of compromise. I know we are capable of meeting this 
challenge today. We have done it before.
  Five years ago, when I was chairman of the Senate Judiciary 
Committee, we brought together 68 Senators, Democrats and Republicans, 
and we voted for an immigration bill that provided protection for 
Dreamers, including an expedited pathway to citizenship. Unfortunately, 
the House, even though they had the votes to pass it, would not bring 
it up. Well, it is time now for the Senate to do so again and, this 
time, for the House to follow suit.
  President Trump claims he will treat Dreamers with great ``heart.'' 
If he meant what he said, he will certainly sign our bipartisan 
compromise that emerges. So let's get to work. The future of Dreamers--
and the fate of the

[[Page S939]]

American dream itself--lies in our hands.
  As I left that funeral yesterday in Vermont, I thought of my wife's 
uncle and her parents coming from Canada to make a better life, my 
grandparents coming from Italy, and my great grandparents coming from 
Ireland, all to make such a mark on our little State of Vermont, all 
for the better. As a member of that family, how proud I am to stand 
here on the floor of the U.S. Senate, but I want to do more than just 
stand here. I want to vote for a bill to help more people like those 
who come to our country and to make our country better.
  I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The bill clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. CORNYN. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order for 
the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  Mr. CORNYN. Mr. President, today a group led by Chairman Grassley of 
the Senate Judiciary Committee formally introduced a bill to address 
the DACA issue--the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals issue--that 
we have heard so much about, as well as border security. I think it is 
a good starting point, and I am proud to be a cosponsor of the 
legislation, which is called the Secure and Succeed Act.
  Perhaps the most important thing about this bill is that it actually 
has a good chance of becoming law. That is because the President 
supports it. It encompasses the four pillars the President has laid out 
for us in any solution to the DACA challenge.
  The Secure and Succeed Act provides legal status and a pathway to 
citizenship for an estimated 1.8 million people who meet the specific 
criteria of DACA. This is a far larger number than the number of 
individuals covered by President Obama's Executive order. The fact is, 
this President has not only said to the 690,000 DACA recipients ``You 
are going to have a better, brighter future and a pathway to American 
citizenship''; this President has also offered all of the young people 
eligible but who might not have previously signed up that same 
opportunity. What an extraordinarily generous offer.
  This bill also provides for a real plan to strengthen border 
security, utilizing the three things that Border Patrol has always told 
me are essential: more boots on the ground, better technology, and, 
yes, some infrastructure in hard-to-control locations, along with 
enhanced ports of entry.
  I know there has been some confusion about that. The President likes 
to talk about the wall. It is true that back in roughly 2006 or 2007, 
Congress called for something called the Secure Fence Act, which got 
the support of then-Senator Obama, then-Senator Hillary Clinton, and, 
of course, current Senator Chuck Schumer. They supported the Secure 
Fence Act, as did an overwhelming majority of Senators from both 
parties.
  When the President has talked about the wall, he has made pretty 
clear what he is really talking about is a barrier similar to what was 
supported on a bipartisan basis. He said that the Border Patrol is 
going to have to be able to see through it. Indeed, as he has conceded, 
in many places it doesn't make any sense at all to have a physical 
barrier. That is why technology and boots on the ground are so 
important.
  This legislation also reallocates visas from the diversity lottery 
system in a way that is fair and continues the existing, family-based 
categories until the current backlog is cleared, which would take, 
probably, about 10 years. I am proud to cosponsor this commonsense 
solution. But I know other colleagues have been working hard on their 
ideas, which I look forward to reviewing as the debate continues.
  One group I haven't heard from much, though, is our Democratic 
colleagues, who literally shut down the government to force this debate 
to occur on their terms and at a time they chose. We are still trying 
to figure out--OK, you won, in a sense. I think the American people 
lost when you shut down the government, but you made your point. You 
wanted a time certain and you wanted a fair process by which to present 
your ideas, and we have been waiting--here it is Wednesday, with the 
clock ticking, still waiting--for that Democratic proposal. What is 
their plan? What is their proposal? Do they even have one? And if they 
do, why are they leaving the rest of us, as well as the Nation, in the 
dark?
  As the majority leader said yesterday, we need to stop trying to 
score political points and start making law. The way to get this done 
is to take a proposal like the President's and get started; people can 
offer amendments to that. Whatever gets 60 votes in the Senate passes 
the Senate, and then it is up to the House to pass it, and then it is 
up to the President to decide whether to sign it. He has pretty much 
given us the outline of what he would find acceptable. Again, insofar 
as it grants a pathway to citizenship for 1.8 million people, that is 
extraordinary in and of itself.
  The majority leader made a commitment to hold this debate and to hold 
it this week. He has lived up to his promise, and now we can't let it 
all go to waste. As each minute and each hour clicks off the clock, it 
looks as if it is more and more likely to happen--that all of this will 
go to waste.
  The country is watching. The DACA recipients in my home State--all 
124,000 of them--are watching and worrying, understandably anxious 
about what their status is going to be when this program ends on March 
5.
  One of those DACA recipients is Julio Ramos, a biology teacher who is 
getting his master's degree in biomedical informatics. He is from 
Brownsville, TX, right along the U.S.-Mexico border, and he is a DACA 
recipient. After his mother was diagnosed with breast cancer, he 
decided he wanted to be a doctor. He has even been accepted to Texas 
medical schools, but he wasn't sure whether he would be allowed to 
attend. He is waiting and watching, worried about his future.
  Then there is Miriam Santamaria from Houston, TX. She graduated from 
high school in Houston with honors. She paid her way through community 
college, and she works as a manager at a construction company and owns 
her own photography business. She sounds like quite an entrepreneur to 
me. Miriam said: ``I am not looking for any kind of recognition or 
sympathy, [I'm just] looking to make a difference and inspire others.'' 
She is also looking to live in peace in the only country that she has 
ever known and calls home. She came to the United States when she was 4 
years old.
  Finally, there is a man whom I will just call by the first name of 
Daniel. He, too, lives in Texas. He graduated from the University of 
North Texas with a degree in advertising and contributes productively 
to society. Daniel came from Mexico at the age of 2, and he said: ``All 
the choices I make, I made as an American, because that's what I am.''
  We need to listen to these stories as we consider this legislation 
and as people are perhaps tempted into the political grandstanding and 
gamesmanship that, unfortunately, sometimes overwhelms our best 
intentions. These are real human lives hanging in the balance. They are 
important, and they teach us about the real people behind the policy.
  But their stories are not the only ones we need to listen to. We need 
to listen to the stories of the men and women who have been waiting 
patiently for years to come here in a legal way through visas and green 
cards, waiting patiently to join their families here in the United 
States, doing it the old-fashioned, legal way. They have had to wait, 
some for years, some for decades.
  We should listen to the stories of the border communities, which I am 
proud to represent in Texas, from men and women, many of whom are of 
Hispanic origin, who have suffered property damage from illegal 
immigration.
  Illegal immigration is a pretty ugly business when you consider that 
it is in the hands of drug cartels and transnational criminal 
organizations. Recently, one of the military leaders who is responsible 
for Southern Command, which is Central America south, said that these 
transnational criminal organizations or cartels are ``commodity 
agnostic.'' That is the phrase he used. He said that they don't care 
whether it is people, drugs, or other contraband. What they are in it 
for is the money, and they are willing to do

[[Page S940]]

anything for the money. Unfortunately, victims of human trafficking 
know exactly what I am talking about.
  Despite these hardships, businesses in many of the communities, like 
those along the border, are thriving. But we need to do everything we 
can to make sure that continues to be the case.
  Sympathy for DACA recipients is right and good because, in America, 
we do not punish children for the mistakes of their parents, and we are 
not going to punish these young people who are now adults and have 
become part of our communities. But Americans who live along the border 
in my State realize that illegal immigration has caused real, tangible 
harm in terms of public safety, property damage, and their way of life.
  When I talk to people like Manny Padilla, the Border Patrol's sector 
chief for the Rio Grande Valley, it is hard not to realize just how 
much is required and how many more resources we need to maintain 
situational awareness and operational control along the border.
  I will say this: The Federal Government has failed over the years to 
live up to its responsibility to maintain the security of our border, 
so taxpayers in my State have to step up and fill the gap left by the 
failure of leadership of the Federal Government. But we have an 
opportunity to fix that in this legislation, following the parameters 
the President has laid out for us. That is why, during this week's 
debate, ensuring additional resources for border security is an 
essential piece of the puzzle. That includes areas other than between 
our ports of entry. Mexico is one of our largest trading partners. We 
have legitimate trade and commerce that flows back and forth across the 
border with Mexico and supports 5 million American jobs. Unfortunately, 
the cartels have figured out how to exploit that as well. So, because 
of antiquated infrastructure and technology at our ports of entry, many 
of them are vulnerable through the importation of poison--literally, 
drugs like methamphetamine, cocaine, heroin, and the like--that has 
taken the lives of so many Americans. We need to do more and better 
when it comes to maintaining those ports of entry--upgrading the 
infrastructure, improving the technology--so we can interdict more of 
that.
  Again, the border is as varied as anyplace in the world, with areas 
that are flat and open, areas that have mountains and rolling hills, 
rivers, obviously. Technology, as we have come to see, has transformed 
our way of life, and technology can increasingly be the answer to 
supplement the boots on the ground and the infrastructure that the 
Border Patrol thinks are necessary.
  There is a big difference between detecting illegal immigration in 
rural areas and urban ones. In urban areas, the Border Patrol tells us 
that you might have just a few seconds before someone can cross the 
border and enter into the United States. In large, open areas, there is 
more of a lag time, so perhaps a fence or some infrastructure is not as 
important; technology might be more important, along with the Border 
Patrol agents themselves.
  My basic point is that border security is complex. For those who 
think it is as easy as one, two, three, I encourage you to do as some 
of my colleagues have done; that is, travel to the border--we will host 
you--to see firsthand why it is crucial that we strengthen our 
personnel, technology, and infrastructure. That has to be one of our 
priorities, and I am grateful to the President for making this one of 
his requirements as well.
  We have an opportunity to address not only the anxiety and plight of 
DACA recipients but also to make our country safer and more secure; to 
reform our legal immigration system in a way that will help us 
accelerate the reunification of families out of the backlog of people 
waiting patiently and legally outside of the country to come into the 
country through legal immigration; and to address the President's 
concern about the roll of the dice in the diversity lottery that makes 
little sense, given our need for people with job-based skills, graduate 
degrees, and other merit-based criteria that would make them valuable 
to the United States, in addition to winning the lottery.
  I hope we will take advantage of this opportunity this week. Time is 
wasting. It is Wednesday, and we don't have any time to waste at all.
  I yield the floor.
  I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mrs. Ernst). The clerk will call the roll.
  The senior assistant legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. PERDUE. Madam President, I ask unanimous consent that the order 
for the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  Mr. PERDUE. Madam President, I rise to talk about the topic of the 
week.
  Although some of us have been working on this for some time, many of 
us in this body have actually been addressing this for over the last 20 
years or so. I am new to this body, as I have only been here a few 
years, but, last year I got involved in this. We are dealing with the 
immigration issue today, not just the DACA issue.
  Our current immigration system is outdated, threatens our national 
security, and does not meet the needs of our economy. The issue before 
the Senate this week is not just about DACA, which is but one 
manifestation of our broken immigration policies. Rather, President 
Trump, while offering a generous solution for DACA recipients, has 
proposed a broader solution to our legal immigration system that will 
ensure that we are not back here in just a few short years to deal with 
this same problem again. Over the past 11 years, Congress has failed to 
fix our broken immigration system three times, primarily because it has 
attempted to solve the entire situation, the comprehensive problem, 
which would be the legal situation, the temporary work visa problems, 
and then the illegal situation.
  The Secure and Succeed Act only deals with our legal immigration 
policy. From the onset of these negotiations, President Trump has been 
consistent with what he has wanted as part of any immigration deal that 
deals with the legal immigration system. Months ago, he gave us a clean 
framework. He said that any plan that didn't fit that framework would 
never become law. The Secure and Succeed Act, which we are dealing with 
this week, is the only plan that actually fits that framework. It is 
the only plan the President has said he will sign into law. The 
framework that has been laid out by President Trump has four parts.
  First, it provides a solution for the DACA situation and ends the 
program. It does so in a compassionate, responsible way that every 
Senator on the other side of the aisle should support and has supported 
at various times. President Trump went out of his way to reach across 
the aisle to the Democrats when he expanded the population that was 
being discussed in the DACA situation, and he actually talked about 
providing long-term certainty for this population group.
  Second, this bill secures our borders with additional border security 
and a wall where required. It puts $25 billion in a trust fund toward 
border security and a wall system. This money would be spent over the 
next few years to provide better national security for our country's 
borders. It ends policies like catch and release, which encourage more 
illegal immigration. It makes critical changes to the immigration court 
system to clear out backlogs, expedite court hearings, and give law 
enforcement the resources it needs to do its job properly.
  Third, this bill fixes the flaws in the current immigration system 
that spurred this DACA problem in the first place and incentivized 
illegal immigration. It protects the immediate family of the primary 
worker. Seventy-two percent of Americans believe immigration should 
include the primary workers, their spouses, and their immediate 
children, which is exactly what this bill does. In addition, two-thirds 
of Americans actually believe that the solution here for illegal 
immigration includes the DACA fix, an end to chain migration, border 
security, and an end to the diversity lottery--two-thirds. That is from 
a Harvard poll that was put out several weeks ago, and there are others 
that actually corroborate that.
  This bill also expedites the backlog, which is something that was not 
even discussed before we brought this bill forward. This bill ensures 
that the primary family of immediate citizens--

[[Page S941]]

some of them are recent green card recipients and new citizens who are 
trying to get their families in--will be reunited. But there is a 
backlog. We have that in this bill and have ensured that the backlog 
will be taken care of and that these families will be reunited, which 
is what most Americans want.
  Fourth, the Secure and Succeed Act ends the archaic visa lottery 
program. This failed program is dangerous, filled with fraud, and has 
proven to be an avenue for terrorists to enter our country. We simply 
must fix these national security flaws and close the loopholes in our 
current immigration system that incentivize illegal immigration. If we 
don't deal with these problems that got us here in the first place, we 
will be right back here in just a few short years. This is the 
President's objective. If we are going to deal with it, let's deal with 
it once and for all on the immigration side and then move on to the 
temporary work visas and solve that as well.
  I don't think anybody in this body wants to be back here in a few 
short years. Many on the other side and on our side have been trying to 
find a common solution to this for decades. I believe we have an 
historic opportunity right now to do something that people in this body 
have wanted to do for a long time, and that is to solve our legal 
immigration system in a very compassionate, fair way that will benefit 
every American. That is why we have to deal with these issues in a 
responsible and fair way.

  Politicians have talked about this for far too long. I have 
discovered, now having been in this body, that it is easy for some to 
just kick this down the road. It is a great pandering opportunity for 
one side or the other to blame this on them. Unfortunately, the 
American people deserve better than that. We have a clean opportunity 
here to do what most people in America want us to do.
  Other than politics, there is no reason for the Secure and Succeed 
Act not to have widespread, bipartisan support this week in this body. 
Each part of the Secure and Succeed Act has been supported by many 
Democrats at various times over the last 30 years. As a matter of fact, 
in 1994, Barbara Jordan presented the result of her bipartisan 
immigration commission report to then-President Bill Clinton. The 
recommendations at that time were to change our immigration system from 
our current country caps and chain migration system to more of a 
skills-based system like those seen in Canada and Australia.
  They knew then the flaws that were included in our immigration law 
that was written in 1965 that actually incentivized illegal 
immigration. Unfortunately, it seems that because these ideas are now 
being put forward by President Donald Trump, the Democrats, all of a 
sudden, disagree with these principles. President Trump has crafted a 
deal that is tough but more than generous. Nobody asked him to expand 
the number or to even talk about certainty in the long term. He has 
brought that forward because he wants this done. He wants this solved. 
He wants this ended right now.
  The Secure and Succeed Act follows the framework that President Trump 
has crafted. Compromises have been made on both sides of this issue. It 
deals with the DACA issue, secures the border, and fixes critical flaws 
in our immigration system that incentivize illegal immigration today. 
This is to ensure that we are not back here in a few short years to 
deal with the problem again of a new wave of young people who may be 
brought here illegally.
  Again, the President has said repeatedly that the Secure and Succeed 
Act is the only bill that he will sign into law. Leadership in the U.S. 
House of Representatives has also been clear that the only plan it will 
bring up for a vote in its body is one that will be signed into law. 
The Secure and Succeed Act is that plan.
  We don't have many opportunities in this body for common thought and 
common positions, but we have one here. I have seen what most people in 
this body have said about these issues, and it impresses me that there 
is commonality of thought. At the root, this body wants to solve the 
DACA issue, but it also wants to solve the problems that caused this 
issue in the first place.
  This President called for a compassionate compromise when he met with 
Democrats and Republicans several weeks ago at the White House, and we 
all agreed it was time to do that for the American people. Yet the 
American people want to be assured that the borders will be secure. 
They want to be assured that the policies that are embedded in our 
immigration system will not create another wave of illegal immigrants. 
They also want this archaic diversity lottery to end, which has never 
worked as was originally intended and is nothing but a loophole for 
terrorists today.
  I think there is too much talk about this bill cutting immigration. 
That is not the intent here. The intent is long term. We have a bill in 
here called the RAISE Act that would actually move us to a merit-based 
system like those in Canada and Australia. That is not included in the 
Secure and Succeed Act. What is included here is a first step toward a 
long-term solution not only on our legal immigration side, but it sets 
us up to then deal with the temporary work visas and, ultimately, with 
the illegal population.
  I believe, as I know the Presiding Officer does, that it is time for 
those in this body to put our self-interests and our partisan interests 
aside, as we say so many times, and to do what the American people want 
us to do, for which we now have hard evidence.
  I yield the floor.
  I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The senior assistant legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. SANDERS. Madam President, I ask unanimous consent that the order 
for the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.


Congratulating Chloe Kim on Winning a Gold Medal at the Winter Olympics

  Mr. SANDERS. Madam President, let me begin by congratulating Chloe 
Kim, a first-generation American who won an Olympic Gold Medal for the 
United States in the women's halfpipe snowboarding event this week.
  Her father, Jong Jin Kim emigrated from South Korea to the United 
States in 1982, became a dishwasher at a fast-food restaurant, studied 
engineering at El Camino College after working those low-skilled jobs, 
and then became an engineer. He left his engineering job to support his 
daughter's snowboarding ambitions so he could drive her 5\1/2\ hours to 
the mountain for training.
  Congratulations to Chloe and to her entire family. You make the 
United States proud.
  Madam President, the whole debate we are now undertaking over 
immigration and the Dreamers has become somewhat personal for me 
because it has reminded me, in a very strong way, that I and my brother 
are first-generation Americans. We are the sons of an immigrant who 
came to this country at the age of 17 without a nickel in his pocket, a 
young man who was a high school dropout, who did not know one word of 
English, and who had no particular trade.
  A few years ago, my brother and I and our families went to the small 
town where he came from, and it just stunned me, the kind of courage he 
showed and millions of other people show leaving their homeland to come 
to a very different world, in many cases, without money, without 
knowledge of the language.
  My father immigrated to this country because the town where he lived 
in Poland was incredibly poor. There was no economic opportunity for 
him. People there struggled to put food on the table for their 
families. Hunger was a real issue in that area. My father came to this 
country to avoid the violence and bloodshed of World War I, which came 
to his part of the world in a ferocious manner, and he came to this 
country to escape the religious bigotry that existed then because he 
was Jewish. My father lived in this country until his death in 1962. He 
never made a lot of money. He was a paint salesman.
  My father was not a political person, but it turned out that without 
talking much about it, he was the proudest American you ever saw, and 
he was so proud of this country because he was deeply grateful that the 
United States had welcomed him in and allowed him opportunities that 
would have been absolutely unthinkable from where he came.
  The truth is, immigration is not just my story. It is not just the 
story of one

[[Page S942]]

young man coming from Poland who managed to see two of his kids go to 
college and one of his sons become a U.S. Senator. It is not just my 
family's story. It is the story of my wife's family who came from 
Ireland, and it is the story of tens of millions of American families 
who came from every single part of this world.
  In September of 2017, President Trump precipitated the current crisis 
we are dealing with by revoking President Obama's DACA Executive order. 
If President Trump believed that Executive order was unconstitutional 
and it needed legislation, he could have come to Congress for a 
legislative solution without holding 800,000 young people hostage by 
revoking their DACA status. President Trump chose not to do that. He 
chose to provoke the crisis we are experiencing today. That is a crisis 
we have to deal with in the Senate, and we have to deal with it now.
  Let us be very clear about the nature of this crisis because some 
people say: Well, it is really not imminent. It is not something we 
have to worry about now. Those people are wrong. As a result of Trump's 
decision, 122 people every day are now losing their legal status, and 
within a couple of years, hundreds of thousands of these young people 
will have lost their legal protection and be subject to deportation. 
The situation we are in right now, as a result of Trump's action, 
means, if we do not immediately protect the legal status of some 
800,000 Dreamers--young people who were brought to this country at the 
age of 1 or 3 or 6--young people who have known no other home but the 
United States of America--let us be clear that if we do not act and act 
soon, these hundreds of thousands of young people could be subject to 
deportation.
  That means they could be arrested outside their home, where they have 
lived for virtually their entire life, and suddenly be placed in a 
jail. They could be pulled out of a classroom where they are teaching, 
and there are some 20,000 DACA recipients who are now teaching in 
schools all over this country. If we do not act and act now, there 
could be agents going into those schools, pulling those teachers right 
out and arresting them and subjecting them to deportation. Insane as it 
may sound, I suppose the 900 DACA recipients who now serve in the U.S. 
military today could find themselves in the position of being arrested 
and deported from the country they are putting their lives on the line 
to defend. Some people say: Well, that is far-fetched. Well, I am not 
so sure. It could happen. How insane is that? That is where we are 
today, and that is what could happen if we do not do the right thing 
and this week pass legislation in the Senate to protect the Dreamers.
  We have a moral responsibility to stand up for the Dreamers and their 
families and to prevent what will be an indelible moral stain on our 
country if we fail to act. I do not want to see what the history books 
will be saying about this Congress if we allow 800,000 young people to 
be subjected to deportation, to live in incredible fear and anxiety.
  Here is the very good news for the Dreamers. It is actually news that 
a couple of years ago, I would not have believed to be possible. The 
overwhelming majority of American people--Democrats, Republicans, 
Independents--absolutely agree we must provide legal protection for the 
Dreamers and that we should provide them with a path toward 
citizenship. That is not Bernie Sanders talking, that is what the 
American people are saying in poll after poll.
  Just recently, a January 20 CBS News poll found that nearly 9 out of 
10 Americans, 87 percent, favor allowing young immigrants who entered 
the United States illegally as children to remain in the United 
States--87 percent in Iowa, in Vermont, and in every State in this 
country. There is strong support for legal status for the Dreamers and 
a path toward citizenship.
  On January 11, a Quinnipiac poll found that 86 percent of American 
voters, including 76 percent of Republicans, say they want the Dreamers 
to remain in this country.
  On February 5, in a Monmouth poll, when asked about Dreamers' status, 
nearly three out of four Americans support allowing these young people 
to automatically become U.S. citizens as long as they don't have a 
criminal record. In other words, the votes that are going to be cast 
hopefully today, maybe tomorrow, are not profiles in courage. They are 
not Members of the Senate coming up and saying: Against all the odds, I 
believe I am going to vote for what is right. This is what the 
overwhelming majority of the American people want.
  Maybe, just maybe, it might be appropriate to do what the American 
people want rather than what a handful of xenophobic extremists want. 
Maybe we should listen to the American people--Democrats, Republicans, 
and Independents--who understand it would be a morally atrocious thing 
to allow these young people to be deported. When I think, from a 
political perspective, about 80, 85, 90 percent of the American people 
supporting anything in a nation which is as divided as we are today, 
this is really extraordinary. You can't get 80 percent of the American 
people to agree on what their favorite ice cream is, but we have 80 
percent of the American people who are saying, do not turn your back on 
these young people who have lived in this country for virtually their 
entire lives.
  We have to act and act soon in the Senate, and there is good 
legislation that would allow us to do that. In the House, the good news 
is, there is now bipartisan legislation, sponsored by Congressman Hurd 
and Congressman Aguilar, which will provide protection for Dreamers and 
a path toward citizenship. My understanding is, bipartisan legislation 
now has majority support.
  I urge, in the strongest terms possible, that Speaker Ryan allow 
democracy to prevail in the House, allow the vote to take place. If you 
have a majority of Members of the House, in a bipartisan way, who 
support legislation, allow that legislation to come to the floor. Let 
the Members vote their will, and if that occurs, I think the Dreamers 
legislation will prevail.
  Madam President, we all understand that there is a need for serious 
debate and legislation regarding comprehensive immigration reform. This 
is a difficult issue, an issue where there are differences of opinion. 
There are a whole lot of aspects to it. How do we provide a path toward 
citizenship for the 11 million people in this country who are currently 
undocumented but who are working hard, who are raising their kids, who 
are obeying the law? What should the overall immigration policy of our 
country be? How many people should be allowed to enter this country 
every year? Where should they come from?
  All of this is very, very important and needs to be seriously 
debated, but that debate and that legislation is not going to be taking 
place in a 2-day period. It is going to need some serious time, some 
hearings, some committee work before the Congress is prepared to vote 
on comprehensive immigration reform, and it will not and cannot happen 
today, tomorrow, or this week.
  Our focus now, as a result of Trump's decision in September, must be 
on protecting the Dreamers and their families and on the issue of 
border security.
  There will be important legislation coming to the floor of the Senate 
today or maybe tomorrow, and I would hope that we could do the right 
thing, do the moral thing, and do something that history will look back 
on as very positive legislation. Let's go forward. Let's pass the 
Dreamers bill. Let's deal with border security, and then, in the near 
future, let us deal with comprehensive immigration reform.
  I yield the floor.
  (The Acting President pro tempore assumed the Chair.)
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Sasse). The Senator from Oregon.
  Mr. MERKLEY. Mr. President, our Constitution begins with three very 
simple and very powerful words: ``We the People.'' It is the mission 
statement for our Nation, for our Constitution. It is a vision in which 
decisions are made of, by, and for the people, not for the privileged 
and not for the powerful.
  Who wrote those words? Well, it happened to be a group of White, 
wealthy landowners--the powerful and the privileged. They didn't choose 
to build a nation that would make laws for their benefit but laws that 
would be designed for the entire populous to thrive.
  They were descended from immigrants. In our country, unless you are 
100 percent Native American, unless you have just arrived as a new 
immigrant, you are descended from immigrants yourself. It is part of 
the fabric

[[Page S943]]

of our Nation. It is what makes us a combination of powerful talents 
and abilities from around the world.
  George Washington himself once said: ``America is open to receive not 
only the Opulent and respected Stranger, but the oppressed and 
persecuted of all Nations and Religions.'' On another occasion, he 
wrote to a friend: ``I had always hoped that this land might become a 
safe and agreeable asylum to the virtuous and persecuted part of 
mankind, to whatever nation they might belong.'' True to Washington's 
wishes and to his vision, that is the land we have been. It has been 
that land of opportunity, that land that welcomes others to our shores 
and gives them the chance to pursue the vision of opportunity, to help 
participate in the making of our great Nation, and to do so, each 
generation brings together a variety of languages and cultures and 
backgrounds. That is America.
  That is why, a century after our Nation's founding, the French gave 
to the United States the Statue of Liberty. The Statue of Liberty has 
stood as a beacon of hope, welcoming those from other lands. Inscribed 
in the pedestal of that statue are these words:

       Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning 
     to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. 
     Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp 
     beside the golden door!

  Those are the welcoming words for hundreds of thousands arriving here 
in the United States.
  As I speak at this moment, 800,000 young men and women right here in 
America are yearning to breathe free as full participants in the Nation 
that they have grown up in. These are our Dreamers--Dreamers like this 
group of Oregonians who visited my office in December, who came to this 
country as very young children, who went to elementary school here, who 
went to high school here, who are our neighbors, our community members, 
who have gone on to college, who have taken jobs, and who are 
contributing in every possible way to our community, studying in their 
schools, practicing and working in our industry. They are now young 
adults who are striving to support their families, building to 
strengthen this economy, and building a future for themselves. They are 
paramedics saving lives.
  If you stand on a street corner in Oregon and look around, there is a 
pretty good chance you will see a Dreamer. You may not know it because 
they are full members of our community, and you will see them 
contributing. But they have overcome a lot of obstacles, which creates 
a grit of character. It also helps to build the future of our Nation, 
just as it did for those of our forefathers and foremothers who arrived 
1 or 2 or 3 or 10 generations ago.
  We provided a program, the DACA Program, which struck a deal that 
said: If you give us all of your information, we will make sure that 
you are legally protected. President Trump has broken that promise. He 
has broken that deal, that commitment made by our executive branch to 
these Dreamers. So it puts them in a terrible spot of uncertainty and 
stress and limbo. Now it is time to set that right. It could be set 
right by the President in a moment.
  Several of the courts have weighed in and said that the President has 
acted unconstitutionally in attacking our young immigrants, our 
Dreamers. But let's not wait for the courts to remedy this. Let's take 
care of it ourselves in this Chamber, the Senate Chamber. After months 
and months of inaction, after broken promises by President Trump, let's 
finally protect these men and women who do so much to embody the 
American spirit.
  As we move forward in this debate, we must look again to what our 
Founding Fathers intended for the Nation they created and ensure that 
the ``golden door'' that the poet Emma Lazarus wrote about in her poem 
remains an open door, open to all those who dream to become an American 
and to contribute to this Nation. We must remain, in President 
Washington's words, ``open to receive not only the Opulent and 
Respected, but the oppressed and persecuted of all Nations.''
  Yet, looking at the plan that President Trump has put forward and 
similar plans offered in this Chamber, there is a real interest in 
slamming the door shut by those who have already arrived as immigrants, 
who have fled persecution, who have pursued freedom, who have pursued 
opportunity, and who have escaped from famine to come in and slam the 
door on everyone else. It is not very American to do that, and it is 
not a strength to undermine the future success of our economy by 
draining away the extraordinary talents of our Dreamer community.
  President Johnson made the point. He said: ``The land flourished 
because it was fed from so many sources--because it was nourished by so 
many cultures and traditions and peoples.''
  President Ronald Reagan made the point. He said: ``More than any 
other country, our strength comes from our own immigrant heritage and 
our capacity to welcome those from other lands.''
  The founding President of our country, a respected Democratic 
President of our country, and a respected Republican President of our 
country have said the same thing: The strength of our country is in the 
contributions that have been made by our immigrants.
  The Founding Fathers wrote those words, that mission statement, that 
this would be a nation of, by, and for the people, not one to make laws 
by and for the powerful and the privileged. That is the vision we need 
to continue to hold on to--to understand that the strength of this 
Nation comes from weaving together the many cultural threads of the 
people of the United States of America.
  Let's get this Dream Act to this floor. There is a bipartisan 
understanding around restoring legal status. There is a bipartisan 
foundation for border security. Let's not give in to those far-right 
Breitbart voices that are so out of sync with the traditions, the 
strength, the culture, and the vision of our Nation. Let's restore the 
legal status for our Dreamers, enhance our border security, and do the 
work that this Chamber should have done long ago.
  Thank you.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Missouri.
  Mr. BLUNT. Mr. President, I am pleased to come and talk today.
  This is a week where we had all anticipated a return to the Senate, 
where ideas are widely debated. I was standing by the majority leader 
last week when he was talking about this, and he said that we will let 
a thousand flowers bloom. It didn't sound like something Senator 
McConnell would normally use as a reference, but he did, and I am 
thinking, well, that would be a good thing, to see a thousand different 
ideas widely debated on the Senate floor.
  So far this week, there has not been any debate because we can't seem 
to agree on who votes on what first. I think that is a particular level 
of dysfunction that we should all be concerned about. For the Senate to 
do its work, we have to be willing to vote and we have to be willing to 
take some hard votes. My sense of politics today is, whether you have 
taken the vote or not, someone is going to accuse you of taking that 
vote. So you might as well not worry about the vote you take; just 
worry about the work we get done and whatever votes are necessary to be 
taken to get that done.
  On this topic, it does seem to me that we have two issues here that 
should be solved, two issues on which there is broad agreement. I have 
said for a long time that there are really three questions in the 
immigration debate that need to be answered: No. 1, how do we secure 
the border; No. 2, what are the legitimate workforce needs of the 
country; and No. 3, what do we do with people who came and stayed 
illegally?
  As we think about securing the border, by the way, half the people 
who are in the country illegally came legally and just stayed. So it is 
not all a border issue, but it clearly is partly and significantly a 
border issue.
  One of the things that people expect a government to be able to do is 
to secure its own borders. Often, when we hear a story of a country 
somewhere in the world in which the government has disintegrated and is 
no longer in control of the country, one of the first things that are 
mentioned by people talking about that dysfunctional government is that 
they don't control their own borders. It truly is a legitimate 
expectation of a functioning government that you control your own 
borders. It is also a legitimate expectation of government that you 
look at

[[Page S944]]

your economy and you look at what workforce needs you have that aren't 
being met and figure out the best way to meet those workforce needs.
  In this debate, because we haven't controlled our borders and because 
we haven't kept track of people who legally crossed our borders and as 
a result, we have some number of people--usually the estimate is about 
11 million people in the country--who are not here legally, what do we 
do with those people?
  My view has always been that if the government met its primary 
responsibility, which is an immigration system that works, the American 
people would be very forward-leaning about those other two issues, 
because nobody really argues that if we don't have people here to do 
the work that needs to be done, whether it is highly skilled or not 
highly skilled, we ought to be thinking about what we need to do to get 
people here who can do that work. Also, what do we need to do to keep 
people here who came here to get training to do highly skilled jobs and 
graduated from colleges and universities or other skill-enhancing 
things that happened while they were here. If they want to stay, my 
view is that if they didn't do anything that got them in trouble while 
they were here, we should almost always want them to stay. If we don't 
have that skill set in our economy, why wouldn't we come up with ways 
to reach out and get it?
  Those who are not here legally, generally, I think if people thought 
the problem was solved, if they thought that the government had truly 
met its responsibility to operationally control the borders and that 
the government had met its responsibility to keep track of who comes in 
legally and know if they have left or not--I mean, there is no retail 
store in America that doesn't have a better sense of its inventory than 
we do of whether people who have legally come into the country and 
checked in with a Customs officer--we don't know if they have left. We 
couldn't tell you in weeks, perhaps, whether somebody is still here, 
even if they did everything exactly the way they were supposed to do 
it.
  This debate is largely driven by the most sympathetic of all of those 
groups: that group of people who came here and were brought here by 
someone else who entered the country illegally--often by their own 
parents--but have grown up in America.
  My first response, and I think the response of most Americans when 
they think about that, is that kids who grew up here, kids who went to 
school here, kids who haven't gotten in bad trouble while they were 
here, kids who have no real memory or connection with the country they 
were brought from--of course we want them to stay; of course we want 
them to be part of our economy. Because they are an even younger 
society than we would be without them, why wouldn't we want that to 
happen?
  In some respects, we have two separate issues here. People who were 
raised here, who have done everything that anybody else would do to 
acclimate as an American in all ways, who went to school here, who did 
everything else here--70 or 80 percent of the American people, and I 
occasionally see a number even higher than that, believe they should be 
allowed to stay.
  More and more, as people think about that, they also believe that 
after they have been here, like any other immigrant who came to the 
country legally, they would eventually be able to take the test and go 
through the process to become a citizen. That is a widely accepted 
premise that this debate should be built on.
  Another widely accepted premise that this debate should be built on 
is that 70 percent or so of the American people--and it would be a 
higher percentage if people really knew the facts--believe the 
government has not met its responsibility to secure our own borders.
  Let's assume that number is 70. We have two 70 percent issues. We 
would assume that a working Congress could take two 70 percent issues 
and come up with a solution that makes its way to the President's desk 
and solves both of these problems.
  We are not going to solve these problems by saying: OK, we are going 
to solve the problem for people who are already here, but we are not 
going to do anything to make it harder for others to be brought here 
illegally by someone who has control of them. We are not going to solve 
that? Of course that is not going to work.
  I don't think whether you signed up for DACA should be a determiner, 
and apparently the President agrees. If you are here and in the 
category of those who were brought here and grew up here, whether you 
signed up as a DACA kid, you could still be part of that overall 
discussion of how to stay, and you still get to stay if we can come up 
with a solution for you to do that.
  But we are not going to solve that problem and say: We will have a 
study of the other problem to see what is wrong. If by now we largely 
don't know what is wrong with the other problem, we are never going to 
figure out what is wrong with the other problem.
  In 1986, long before the Presiding Officer or I came to Congress and 
maybe long before some of us graduated from high school, we were going 
to solve this problem. Everybody who was here illegally could stay if 
they wanted to, and the borders would be made secure. Here we are, over 
three decades later, still debating the same thing.
  We need to solve both of these problems. If we can solve other 
problems while we are doing it, that is fine, too, but we need to come 
up with a solution. There are a number of ideas out there as to how the 
Senate should move forward.
  On the DACA issue, it is important to remember that President Trump 
said: I am going to give the Congress 6 more months to solve this 
problem--until March 5. It is also important to know that the courts 
have allowed people to continue to sign up, so really the deadline is 
somewhere beyond March 5. But the President said: I am going to give 
Congress 6 more months.
  President Obama didn't do anything about this for years--not because 
he didn't want to, I believe, but because he said he didn't have the 
ability to. President Obama repeatedly said: The President cannot solve 
this problem; Congress has to solve the problem. In spite of 6 or 7 
years of saying that he couldn't solve this problem on his own, he 
ultimately decided to try to do it with an Executive order.
  The truth is, that Executive order was never going to do the job. I 
think President Obama knew that. When President Trump did his own 
order, he probably also knew he didn't have the ability to do that any 
more than President Obama had to do what he did. But both of these 
Presidents in their own way have tried to drive the Congress toward 
making a decision that comes up with a plan that works--a plan that 
works for kids who were brought here with no choice in the matter and a 
plan for seeing to it that kids can't still be easily brought here with 
no choice. We need to let young people come here because we need them 
here as part of our workforce, as part of our country.
  Legal immigration is what made America great. The rule of law is also 
what makes our country what it is. We can't continue to let immigration 
be an area where we have decided there are laws that we will not 
enforce.
  The challenge for the Congress right now is to come up with a 
solution so that this problem is not going to continue to be the same 
problem it is today, but as far as the problem today, we are going to 
solve it. We are going to solve it in a way that lets kids who grew up 
here become part of the solution.
  I continue to be committed to strengthening our borders. I continue 
to be committed to stemming the tide of illegal immigration. Frankly, I 
continue to be committed to the idea of legal immigration as part of 
continually reinforcing and re-enthusing who we are. But I am also 
committed to finding a permanent solution for young people in that 
category who were brought here, grew up here, haven't gotten in trouble 
while here, and have every reason to want to be part of the American 
dream and part of the American people whom they have been part of up 
until now.
  I hope we can find common ground on a bill that does that. I hope we 
can pass a bill from the Senate that the House will also pass. If 
Senators think they have done their job by passing a bill that can't 
possibly pass the House, that is just kicking the can down the road. We 
need to find a solution that really resolves this problem, and we solve 
this problem by putting a bill on the President's desk. To do that, we 
are going to

[[Page S945]]

have to vote. We can't do that by just having a quorum call or a 
vacancy here on the Senate floor. We have to be willing to vote.
  There are some things that I will enthusiastically vote for and some 
things I will reluctantly not be able to vote for. But that doesn't 
mean that I should say: If I can't be for whatever is brought to the 
Senate floor, then I don't want to vote on it or debate it.
  We can't continue to tune in to a vacant screen of the Senate floor. 
This is the week that we have all committed to having a real debate 
about solving as many problems as we can that relate to kids who were 
brought here and grew up here and solving that problem so other kids in 
these numbers are not likely to face that problem in the future.
  As I yield, I hope the floor is filled over the next couple of days 
with a vigorous debate about the best way to solve the problem before 
us in a way that the people we work for will feel good about it and the 
people who are most impacted by our decision will feel equally the 
concern, the warmth, and the desire of our country to have a vibrant 
economy that has people who want to be part of it, able to be part of 
it, and particularly people who grew up in the United States of America 
to be part of it.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Cotton). The Senator from Wyoming.


                               Tax Reform

  Mr. BARRASSO. Mr. President, it seems as though just about every day 
we get more good news about the tax relief law that Republicans passed. 
This week, the news is getting even better for a lot of people all 
across the country.
  By the end of this month, 90 percent of workers across the country 
will see more money in their take-home paychecks. It doesn't matter 
where they are. They can be in Meeteetse, WY, and they will see an 
increase in their paychecks this week. That is because this Thursday, 
February 15, is the deadline for employers to start using the new IRS 
tax withholding tables. The IRS tells employers how much money to 
withhold from people's paychecks so that their taxes work out pretty 
close at the end of the year. That is the way it is set up. Well, the 
IRS looked at the new tax law and saw that people are going to be 
paying lower taxes at the end of the year, so they put out the new tax 
tables. They told businesses to adjust how much money to withhold from 
a person's paycheck and to do it by February 15, tomorrow. For 90 
percent of Americans, this tax amount is going to be lower, which means 
their paychecks are going to be larger. A tax cut is the same as a 
raise. That is what we are seeing all across the country--people 
getting a raise in their pay.
  Some people have already gotten a paycheck with the new, higher 
wages. Others are going to get it very soon. The website Yahoo Finance 
crunched the numbers. They found that a typical worker making $60,000 a 
year will get an extra $112 in their paychecks every month because of 
the tax law. That is over $1,300 for the year. To me, that is very good 
news for American workers.
  I was at home in Wyoming this past weekend, traveling around the 
State, and I am hearing about it in all the different communities I go 
to. People are saying: This has been better for me and my family 
personally.
  On top of this, a lot of workers are getting special bonuses and 
raises because of the tax law. So not only are they getting more money 
because of the fact that the tax rates have been lowered, additionally, 
they are getting more money because they have gotten a raise or a 
bonus. It seems there are about 4 million hard-working Americans who 
are getting bonuses of hundreds or even thousands of dollars as a 
result of the new tax reform law. They are also getting extra money in 
their retirement plans. They are getting higher starting wages. We are 
seeing many places increasing the starting wages, some up to $15 an 
hour. More than 300 companies have said they are increasing all of 
these kinds of compensations as a direct result of the tax law.
  In my home State of Wyoming, people across the State are getting 
bonuses--bonuses. These are people who work at Home Depot, Lowe's, 
Walmart, Starbucks, Wells Fargo, and other businesses that have 
familiar names to people across the country. They are also people who 
are working in smaller businesses, like the Jonah Bank in Wyoming. It 
has branches in Casper and in Cheyenne. It is not a nationally known 
bank, but it is very important in our State and in our communities. 
Every employee of this bank is getting a $1,000 bonus. The bank is also 
increasing its giving in the communities in which it has branches. 
Workers benefit, and the community benefits.
  That is what happens when we change the tax law so Washington gets 
less and taxpayers get to keep more. That is why I voted for this tax 
law--to give the kind of tax relief that made these bonuses and these 
pay raises possible. It is good for Wyoming, and it is good for people 
all across the country.
  It is interesting--it is even good for people in States whose 
Senators voted against the tax law. Ninety percent of people across the 
country are seeing the benefits no matter which State they are from.
  There is a business in Grand Rapids, MI, called the Mill Steel 
Company. They said last week that they are giving an extra $1,000 to 
their workers because of the tax law that every Republican voted for 
and every Democrat voted against. Now, 400 people at that company are 
getting a bonus.
  Michigan has two Democratic Senators. They both voted against the tax 
relief law. It still led to $1,000 bonuses for these 400 workers. What 
do the Senators have to say about it now? Are they proud that they 
voted against the tax law? Are they glad they said no to these sorts of 
raises that made it possible for people in their home States to get the 
bonuses?
  We know what Nancy Pelosi thinks. She went out and first she talked 
about how the tax law was Armageddon, and then she said it was the end 
of the world. Most recently, she said all the benefits people are 
getting under the tax law, in her words, are just ``crumbs.'' 
``Crumbs,'' she said. For her, it may be different, but for a lot of 
Americans, a $1,000 bonus--certainly for the people in my home State of 
Wyoming--is much more than crumbs. An extra $1,300--I talked about the 
worker earlier--in that paycheck is much more than crumbs. For a person 
with a starting wage of $15 an hour, that is more than crumbs.

  It is bad enough Democrats tried to keep people from getting the 
extra money--Democrats voted against it because they didn't want people 
to get the extra money, it seems to me. It is hard to believe they 
would continue this way and take pride in voting against it, but they 
did. Now it seems like Democrats want to insult people by saying what 
they are seeing and what their benefits are, are resulting in crumbs. 
It is completely unfair, and I think it is disrespectful to the 
American people.
  These are just some of the cash benefits workers are getting from the 
tax law. Republicans predicted, during the debate over this law, there 
would be other benefits as well. We said businesses would pay less in 
taxes, and some of them would be able to additionally cut prices for 
consumers--let people buy things more cheaply.
  Americans are starting to see this prediction come true as well. One 
of the first places they are seeing it is in their utility bills. Gas, 
electric, and water utilities are cutting their rates because their 
taxes are going down under the law. In Vermont, the State's only 
natural gas utility company is cutting rates by more than 5 percent 
because of the tax law. Both of the Senators from Vermont voted against 
the law, but it is the law Republicans passed that caused these rates 
to go down. In fact, people living in at least 23 States and the 
District of Columbia are going to be paying lower utility bills because 
of the tax relief law. Another 26 States are looking into cutting 
rates. Rates are going down in California, Maryland, New York, 
Massachusetts, Connecticut--States where every Democratic Senator voted 
against the tax law.
  What do these Democratic Senators have to say now? Are they proud of 
the fact they voted against the tax cuts that made it possible for 
people to have lower utility bills in their States? When people's 
monthly bills get cut, it is like a pay hike--more money in their own 
pockets. They have more money to either save or to spend on other 
things or to invest.

[[Page S946]]

  The owner of a gym in Cincinnati, OH, spoke with his local television 
station about what tax relief means for him. He said:

       When people have that extra money to spend, they spend it.

  Some save it.

       They go out to eat. They buy gym memberships. And they 
     enjoy themselves.

  People have that extra money to spend now, today, because of the tax 
law Republicans passed. They have the extra money despite every 
Democrat in this body voting against tax relief. Every one of them said 
no. They all voted no. Democrats who voted no to tax relief for 
American families essentially voted yes to keep the extra money in 
Washington so they can decide how to spend it.
  I have much more faith in people at home in Wyoming deciding how to 
spend their money than any faith I have in Washington, DC. For so many 
Americans, every dollar helps, and they are not crumbs. Democrats may 
not know the difference, but the American families do. People in every 
State of this country know the difference.
  The American people understand what Republicans did with this tax 
law. They are seeing more money in their paychecks, more take-home pay, 
more money to decide what to spend and what to invest and what to save. 
They know Republicans promised to cut people's taxes. People know 
Republicans delivered on the promise. They know the benefits they have 
gotten already, and they are confident the economy will continue to 
grow stronger day by day.
  People across the country also know the fact that every Democrat 
voted against this law, voted against giving them a tax break, voted 
against allowing them to keep more of their hard-earned money. The 
American people know who took their side, who voted for the American 
public versus who said no. Hard-working Americans asked us to do a job 
for them. Republicans are doing the job; Democrats in Washington 
certainly are not. Republicans are going to keep doing that job for the 
American people--a job we have promised and a job which we have 
delivered.
  I yield the floor.
  I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The bill clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Ms. HIRONO. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order for 
the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  Ms. HIRONO. Mr. President, it is time for the Senate to do its job as 
a separate branch of government.
  This week, we can come together on a bipartisan basis to resolve the 
crisis Donald Trump created when he canceled DACA. We can provide 
hundreds of thousands of young people in our country their shot at 
pursuing the American dream without fear of deportation. Right now, 
these young people who were brought to this country as children are 
terrified they will be separated from their families and the lives they 
have built here, in the only country they know and love.
  I have met and spoken with so many Dreamers in the Halls of Congress 
these past months. Their focus, determination, and commitment in this 
fight continues to be extraordinary and inspiring. Each Dreamer has a 
different story to tell, but they all share a profoundly simple 
aspiration--to live, work, and study in the only country they have ever 
called home.
  When you sit and listen to their stories, it is not difficult to 
understand why between 80 and 90 percent of Americans support 
protecting these Dreamers--people like Karen, Maleni, and Beatrice, who 
can attend the University of Hawaii because of DACA; people like 
Victor, from Houston, who aspires to become a counselor for LGBTQ youth 
like him; and people like Getsi, from Oregon, who works three jobs so 
she can pursue her dream of becoming a nurse practitioner to care for 
our seniors. These inspiring young people don't need to hear any more 
promises. They need Members of Congress to put their votes where their 
mouths have been and do the right thing.
  Like many of my colleagues, I strongly support passing a clean Dream 
Act--legislation that already has bipartisan support--but it is 
critical that we get to the 60 votes we need to pass a bill. I am open 
to discussing different provisions, including some funding for border 
security to help us get there. We can and should have a debate on 
comprehensive immigration reform but only after we pass legislation 
this week to protect the Dreamers. We cannot and should not use this 
debate to provide cover for efforts to dismantle the family-based 
immigration system or to make massive cuts to legal immigration.
  The President and a number of colleagues have made it clear they 
would like to eliminate family-based immigration in favor of a system 
that is designed only to recruit immigrants with advanced degrees and 
specialized skills. It is important for the United States to recruit 
highly skilled immigrants, and we have a number of immigration programs 
that are designed specifically for this purpose, but when you restrict 
immigration only to people with highly specialized skills or advanced 
degrees, you lose out on a lot of human potential that has historically 
contributed so much to our country. We don't have to look far back into 
history to prove why this statement is true.
  Over the past week, the Olympics has captured the excitement and 
imagination of people across the country--in fact, the world. Many of 
the people we have been cheering for are either the children of 
immigrants or are immigrants themselves.
  Over the weekend, we saw Mirai Nagasu, whose parents emigrated from 
Japan, become the first American woman to land a triple axel in the 
Olympics during her appearance in the team figure skating competition. 
Yesterday, we saw Maame Biney, who immigrated to the United States from 
Ghana, take to the ice to compete in the short track speed skating.
  Two nights ago, I watched Chloe Kim throw down a near perfect score 
in the women's snowboard halfpipe to win the Olympic Gold Medal. After 
completing her history-making run, the cameras panned to her father 
Jong Jin Kim, who proudly waved his ``Go Chloe'' sign in the audience.
  Jong arrived in California in 1982 with $800 in his pocket. He worked 
for years at minimum wage jobs to save for college. While studying at 
El Camino College, he worked as a heavy machinery operator at night. 
Jong encouraged Chloe to begin snowboarding when she was 4. They would 
jump off the lifts together, but because he didn't know how to 
snowboard, they would tumble to the ground. Jong bought Chloe her first 
snowboard on eBay for $25. When Chloe was 8, Jong quit his job as an 
engineer to support her snowboarding career. He would often wake up at 
2 a.m. in the morning to drive Chloe over 300 miles to her practices.
  After watching his daughter win the Olympic Gold, Jong said in 
Korean, ``When I came to the United States, this was my American hope. 
Now, this is my American dream.''
  In reflecting on her father's sacrifice, Chloe said, ``My dad has 
definitely sacrificed a lot for me, and I don't know if I could do it 
if I was in his shoes, leaving your life behind and chasing your dream 
because your kid is passionate about this sport. I think today I did it 
for my family, and I am so grateful to them.''
  Chloe's story of winning the Olympic Gold is extraordinary, but her 
father's story speaks to a deep and abiding foundation of America and 
to my personal experience as an immigrant.
  My mom also came to this country--poor and without skills to escape 
an abusive marriage--to give her three children, of which I am one, a 
chance at a better life. Like Jong and Chloe, one generation after my 
mom came to this country, I am standing on the floor of the U.S. 
Senate, fighting for humane immigration policies.
  These stories speak to the broader immigrant experience in our 
country. We work hard and embrace the opportunities this country 
provides, and we often see the result of this hard work within a single 
generation.
  I would ask my colleagues: Do you think the United States would be 
better off if we prevented immigrants like Jong and me from coming to 
this country? Targeting immigrants for discriminatory and harsh 
treatment is denying our country's history. With the exception of our 
original peoples, everyone came to our country from somewhere else. We 
are fighting to preserve

[[Page S947]]

the spirit of our country--that shining city on a hill.
  I yield the floor.
  I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The senior assistant legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Ms. CORTEZ MASTO. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the 
order for the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  Ms. CORTEZ MASTO. Mr. President, like my colleagues from whom we are 
hearing today, I also rise to talk about the importance of protecting 
the Dreamers, not just in the State of Nevada but across this country.
  I want to talk specifically about a term that I constantly hear 
during this debate on how we need to protect Dreamers and at the same 
time address this issue of ``chain migration.'' I call on my colleagues 
and President Trump to really stop using that term and to abandon the 
offensive and misleading term of ``chain migration'' because it paints 
a picture that does not reflect reality.
  Immigrants cannot sponsor their entire families to come here. Our 
system of family-based immigration allows American citizens and green 
card holders to petition for some of their immediate family members to 
join them in the United States. There are numerous steps families must 
take to legally immigrate to the United States. It is a long and 
arduous process that leaves husbands, wives, parents, brothers, and 
sisters waiting for decades. This system is so broken and slow that 
many people die before they ever have the chance to be reunited with 
their loved ones again.
  So this image of immigrants coming in endless chains across our 
borders couldn't be further from the truth. For instance, the U.S. 
Citizenship and Immigration Services is currently processing visa 
applications for the siblings of U.S. citizens from 1994. That is 24 
years ago. This backlog is painful for many American families, like 
Fely. Fely is an immigrant from the Philippines who arrived in the 
United States with her husband and her youngest son back in 1989. Her 
father was a veteran who served in World War II, earned his 
citizenship, and petitioned to have Fely join him in the U.S.
  In the almost three decades since then, Fely has worked tirelessly to 
reunite with her other children. Now at 80 years old, she is still 
waiting and hoping that three of her children will make it through the 
backlog to join her at home. Her story shows us that sponsoring even 
your closest family members is a lengthy and difficult process. 
Tragically, Fely's struggle is not uncommon. Thousands of Filipino 
veterans all across this country are in the same situation.
  As a daughter and granddaughter of veterans, I know firsthand that 
when someone answers the call of duty, family members make sacrifices 
too. I support Senator Hirono's Filipino Veterans Family Reunification 
Act, a bill that would expedite the visa process for Filipino World War 
II veterans' immediate relatives. We should honor the sacrifices that 
veterans and their families make by passing this bill, not by forcing 
them to wait in perpetual limbo.
  Our immigration system reflects our national commitment to the 
strength and importance of the family unit. Families are support 
systems. They pull each other up when someone is in need and pull 
together their resources. Strong families build strong communities.
  Karl is a 20-year-old Filipino-American community organizer born and 
raised in North Las Vegas. Karl's whole family is committed to 
community service. While attending high school, Karl's brother 
volunteers at an organization that serves the homeless. Karl's mother 
teaches special education in North Las Vegas to low-income children. 
Karl's dad is a mechanic and a military veteran, having served this 
country in multiple branches of the armed services. None of them would 
be here if not for our family-based, legal immigration system.

  Some of my Republican colleagues claim to be champions of strong, 
nuclear families and family values. Yet here we are today, considering 
a measure that would tear apart families like Karl's, that would leave 
parents without children, sisters without brothers, and husbands 
without wives. Why does the party of family values think that is 
acceptable?
  The problem is that the party of Donald Trump is not the party of 
family values. Donald Trump doesn't care about families. He wants to be 
able to pick and choose which families get to come in and which have to 
stay out. The White House immigration plan we are considering would cut 
legal immigration by up to 44 percent. That is half a million more 
immigrants who would be banned each year. This is one of the largest 
xenophobic-driven cuts to legal immigration since the 1920s. It would 
affect nearly 22 million people over the next five decades. What is 
going on here? What are they so afraid of?
  I recently sat down with immigrant workers in the Senate and the 
Pentagon who are about to lose their protections from deportation. One 
of them told me that she left El Salvador after seeing her husband 
brutally murdered in front of her and her son. She has been working for 
the Federal Government for the past two decades, serving the very men 
and women who are preparing to vote to send her back to the country she 
fled with her children.
  I also spoke with a Dreamer who works right here in the Senate 
cafeteria. She is the sole provider for her three American-citizen 
children, and she, too, is afraid that under Donald Trump's deportation 
policy, she is going to be ripped apart from her children and sent back 
to a country that she fled.
  These are the people Donald Trump wants to throw out of their homes. 
They are not asking for special treatment or handouts or giveaways. 
They just want to be allowed to stay and work hard and provide for 
their families. They don't want to have to go back to a place where 
they will have to live every day in fear for their lives and for their 
children's lives.
  This President will tell you that immigrants are taking jobs. That is 
a myth. It is a lie that has been spread about every immigrant group in 
American history, and it has been repeatedly debunked by economic 
research. According to the National Academy of Sciences National 
Research Council, a typical immigrant family will pay an estimated 
$80,000 more in taxes than they receive in public benefits over their 
lifetime.
  Immigrant families bring long-term economic benefits to our country 
by starting businesses, purchasing property, and supporting the 
education and achievement of their children. Research shows that 
immigrants drive growth. They generate new patents at twice the rate of 
native-born Americans. In 2014, they earned $1.3 trillion and 
contributed $105 billion in State and local taxes and nearly $224 
billion in Federal taxes. Immigrants are 30 percent more likely to 
start a business in the United States than nonimmigrants, and 18 
percent of small business owners in the United States are immigrants. 
They create jobs right here in the United States. Jobs are not the 
problem here.
  The problem is the color of immigrants' skin. We have a President of 
the United States who has wondered out loud why we can't have more 
Whites come to this country. President Trump denies being a racist. For 
a nonracist, he has done a shockingly good job of cultivating support 
among White supremacists.
  This is not about the color of people's skin, but this is about 
family. This is about strong nuclear families and family values. I am 
proud of who I am, where I came from, and I am a descendant of 
immigrants. But I also learned and believe in strong values and strong 
family values, and we lead with those values. So our immigration system 
should reflect our national commitment to the strength and the 
importance of that family unit and those family values.
  It makes no sense to me that we are fighting today to protect these 
kids and keep them in this country and then take their parents and rip 
them out of their homes and send them back to a country that they do 
not want to go to, that they do not call home, and where their safety 
is called into question. I don't understand that as a family value or 
as an American value.
  So I ask my colleagues, when we are talking about the immigration 
system

[[Page S948]]

and protecting Dreamers, let's implement commonsense immigration 
reform. Let's make sure that when we are protecting Dreamers, we are 
also protecting their family unit and those family values. This is not 
about pitting parents against their kids or having kids decide whether 
they should stay here or their parents should.
  No child should have to go to school concerned that when they come 
home, their parents may not be there. I don't know about you, but I 
went through the public school system in the State of Nevada, and I was 
always, always comforted with the thought that when I walked through 
that door, my mother and father would be there. Any other way to treat 
these children and their families, to me, is inhumane. They are not 
values that we stand for as Americans, and they are not values that we 
lead with when we are talking about commonsense reforms to immigration.
  So I ask my colleagues: Please, as we go through this debate, 
remember who we are talking about. There are faces, there are families, 
there are people behind the very decisions that we make this week.
  Thank you.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from New Mexico.
  Mr. HEINRICH. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent to speak as in 
morning business.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  Mr. HEINRICH. Mr. President, as the Senate takes to the floor to 
debate a long-overdue, bipartisan solution for Dreamers--young 
immigrants who came to our country as children--I would like to tell 
you a story about one Dreamer in my home State of New Mexico to 
illustrate what is at stake here this week.
  Immigrants have long helped to write the economic, social, and 
cultural story of my home State of New Mexico and, for that matter, our 
entire Nation. We are, after all, a nation of immigrants. Over the last 
centuries, our Nation's foundation and the enduring American spirit 
were built by the hard work and the dreams of so many striving young 
immigrants.
  When President Trump made the outrageous decision last fall to end 
the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program--DACA--he threw 
hundreds of thousands of Dreamers deep into fear and uncertainty. Two 
weeks ago, I was proud to welcome Ivonne Orozco-Acosta, one of the 
estimated 7,000 Dreamers from New Mexico, as my guest at the State of 
the Union Address.
  Ivonne's family immigrated to the United States when she was 12 years 
old. She learned English through middle school and graduated from high 
school in Estancia, NM. It was during these challenging years of 
learning that Ivonne was encouraged by her teachers to grow and to 
learn. Ivonne knows the power that educators hold to create positive 
change in students' perspective of themselves.
  Ivonne attended the University of New Mexico, where she earned her BA 
in secondary education with a concentration in Spanish. It is estimated 
that somewhere between 500 and 1,000 students at the University of New 
Mexico right now are Dreamers like Ivonne. These are some of our 
brightest students, and they are our future leaders. Since she 
graduated from UNM 4 years ago, Ivonne has been teaching Spanish at the 
Public Academy for Performing Arts, a charter school in Albuquerque, 
NM.
  Ivonne told me what DACA has meant for her. DACA allowed her to get a 
work permit, to follow her passion for education. It made it possible 
for her to buy a home and her first car. It has also given her an 
opportunity to impact the lives of her students each day and to 
contribute to our State's economy as a teacher and as a taxpayer. DACA 
gave Ivonne, in her words, ``a sliver of hope''--hope that she will 
finally be able to have a permanent home and a place in the only 
country that she knows how to call home.
  Because of her excellent teaching in the classroom and her incredible 
passion for her students, Ivonne was just selected as the 2018 New 
Mexico Teacher of the Year by the New Mexico Public Education 
Department. That is right; Ivonne has been recognized as the teacher of 
the year for our entire State.
  Ivonne's commitment to education and to giving back to her community 
is truly inspiring, and it reminds us just how much is at stake for New 
Mexico and our country in this debate. Our State already struggles to 
keep schools filled with teachers and has one of the highest teacher 
turnover rates in the Nation. Dreamers across the country, like Ivonne, 
are stepping up to serve our communities, to teach our students.
  Nearly 9,000 of the Dreamers who received temporary legal status and 
work permits through the DACA Program are teachers like Ivonne. Many 
more are firefighters; they are police officers; they are scientists; 
they are doctors; they are members of our military. These inspiring 
young people are Americans in every sense of the word, except for a 
piece of paper, and they want nothing more than to be productive 
members of their communities. But until Congress passes the Dream Act, 
these young people like Ivonne will continue to worry about whether 
they will be able to stay in school, keep working, contributing to our 
economy, or remain even in their homes and their neighborhoods.
  I have to ask: Why would we even consider threatening to deport the 
teacher of the year from my State? I simply cannot accept that as 
living up to all that our Nation stands for.
  The Santa Fe New Mexican covered Ivonne's visit to Washington. The 
New Mexican's editorial board said: ``It is no exaggeration to state 
that as the immigration debate goes, so does her future.''
  They went on to call the immigration debate we are engaging here in 
Congress as a fight ``for the soul of this country, founded and 
strengthened by immigrants throughout our history.''
  I, for one, hope that we can learn from the best and most challenging 
parts of our Nation's history of immigration and understand that 
Dreamers like Ivonne are part of the immigration story that has always 
made our Nation great. Deporting these young people who grew up in 
America and want to contribute to their Nation is not what the America 
that I know and love would do. Dreamers deserve commonsense, 
compassionate, and responsible policy.
  Two weeks ago, while President Trump was taking cheap shots at 
immigrants during his State of the Union Address and insinuating that 
all immigrants and asylum seekers pose an existential danger to our 
children and our families, I couldn't help but think of the impacts of 
his words on Ivonne as she sat in the Gallery. There are hundreds of 
thousands of Dreamers like her. They are truly bright spots and rising 
stars in our communities and in our country, and the time has come for 
us to stop playing politics with their lives. Let's stop stirring up 
fear and division when we should be working to find a real path 
forward.
  This week, I believe we have a path forward here in the Senate in 
this debate, and we must pass a bipartisan immigration bill that 
includes the Dream Act in the Senate and in the House. I will do 
everything I can to pass a solution for Dreamers, to create rational 
border security policies, and to make the investments that our border 
region and its communities actually need.
  I will stand with New Mexicans against President Trump's fear-based 
and un-American views, frankly, on immigration and his offensive and 
wasteful border wall that have no place in this debate.
  I hope that each of us in this body recognizes our moral 
responsibility and our obligation to live up to our Nation's ideals and 
its values. We must act with a sense of urgency to find a way forward 
for these Dreamers. Every day that passes without our passing the Dream 
Act is another day of desperation and limbo for young people like 
Ivonne who only know America as their home. Now is the time to give 
these young Americans a permanent place and an earned path to 
citizenship in our Nation. I will do everything I can every step of the 
way to make that happen.
  Thank you, Mr. President.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Toomey). The Senator from Connecticut.


                     South Florida School Shooting

  Mr. MURPHY. Mr. President, as we speak, there is a horrific scene 
playing

[[Page S949]]

out in a high school in South Florida. Turn on your television right 
now, and you will see scenes of children running for their lives--what 
looks to be the 19th school shooting in this country, and we have not 
even hit March.
  I am coming to the floor to talk about something else, but let me 
note once again for my colleagues that this happens nowhere else other 
than the United States of America, this epidemic of mass slaughter, 
this scourge of school shooting after school shooting. It only happens 
here, not because of coincidence, not because of bad luck, but as a 
consequence of our inaction. We are responsible for the level of mass 
atrocity that happens in this country with zero parallel anywhere else.
  As a parent, it scares me to death that this body doesn't take 
seriously the safety of my children, and it seems as though a lot of 
parents in South Florida are going to be asking that same question 
later today.
  We pray for the families and for the victims. We hope for the best.
  Mr. President, I came to the floor today to talk about immigration. I 
want to make a specific case to you today, but before I do, I want to 
talk a little about process.
  I heard a lot of my friends on the Republican side of the aisle say 
on this floor and in the Halls of Congress that President Trump has 
made an immigration proposal and Democrats have been asking for an 
immigration proposal, so we should just accept his first and only 
offer. What is the big deal? President Trump gave you something that 
says ``immigration'' on it. Why aren't you accepting it?
  It is a terrible proposal. It is bad for America. To his credit, 
President Trump does attempt to try to deal with these Dreamer kids, 
but there are 3 million potentially eligible individuals in this 
country, and it only allows about 1.8 million of them to get through 
the process.
  But that is really not the worst part. The worst part is that it cuts 
legal immigration by 40 percent. It basically abandons this country's 
commitment to family-based immigration. I wouldn't be here if we only 
had skills-based immigration. Most Members of this body wouldn't be 
here if the only way that your parents or grandparents or great-
grandparents could have come here is because of a Ph.D. or a degree or 
a certificate. Most of the people in this Chamber, I would imagine, are 
here because their parents or great-grandparents or great-great-
grandparents came here because they had friends or family here. Let's 
not reimagine the history of this country.
  Democrats aren't obligated to accept the first offer from this 
President if it is not good for America. Negotiation still has to be 
part of the legislative process, and I am glad there are Members of the 
Republican and Democratic caucuses who have been trying to do that. We 
will see where that goes.
  The President has put this proposal on the table that dramatically 
cuts immigration into this country because he sees immigration as a 
core weakness of this country. He views new entrants to America as an 
economic drain. That is why he wants to potentially kick out 3 million 
Dreamer kids next month if we don't act. That is why he wants to 
dramatically cut down the number of people who are allowed to legally 
immigrate to America. He views immigrants as a problem that needs to be 
dealt with. And he is not alone. Many Americans agree. I, frankly, hear 
from them regularly in Connecticut.
  Frankly, one could also argue that there is nothing more American 
than being scared of immigrants. Every single new wave of immigrants to 
our shores has been met with some degree of fear and derision and 
prejudice. Like clockwork, every generation or two, American 
politicians denounce immigrants as a threat to the American-born 
worker.
  In the 1850s, growing numbers of Catholic immigrants from Ireland--as 
the Murphys came--and from Germany led to an anti-immigrant party 
arising in this country that elected more than 100 Congressmen, eight 
Governors, and thousands of local politicians. They claimed that 
Catholics could never be Americans because they owed allegiance to the 
Pope.
  Starting in the 1880s, hundreds of thousands of Chinese immigrants 
began to immigrate to the west coast, causing a spike in anti-Chinese 
sentiment that eventually resulted in the passage of something called 
the Chinese Exclusion Act.
  Fearing those who are different from us in skin color or religion or 
national origin or language is an unmistakable facet of American 
history, but over and over again, we have overcome these base instincts 
because our better angels prevail but also because of this bright, 
straight line that connects America's liberal immigration policy with 
our economic greatness.
  I want to take just a couple of minutes to make for you a compact but 
irrefutable case for the correlation between economic power and 
American immigrants.
  From 1870 to 1910, it is no coincidence that America's transformation 
into a global economic powerhouse occurred during a period of massive 
influx of human capital. During that time, nearly 15 percent of all 
Americans were foreign-born. That is a share that our country has never 
reached since then. This period of unprecedented growth forever 
dispelled the myth that we still labor under today that the number of 
American jobs is fixed. Immigrants increase demand, and that increased 
demand creates jobs.

  Organizations from the National Academy of Sciences to the 
conservative Cato Institute have done their own studies on this 
question and have come to the same conclusion.
  Cato recently said this:

       Immigrants add jobs, in part by raising consumer demand. So 
     getting rid of immigrants, such as by deporting unauthorized 
     workers, would most likely destroy jobs and raise native 
     unemployment.

  That makes sense, right? But if you don't believe that immigrants 
create growth, there is another, even simpler explanation as to why we 
need robust immigration. At present birth rates, we don't have enough 
people born here to fill all the jobs that are going to be created in 
the next 20 years. It is estimated that, accounting for growth, America 
is going to need 83 million new workers to enter the workforce in the 
next 20 years. But here is the problem. Only 51 million new workers 
will be native-born. That leaves us 32 million short. Unless folks 
start churning out a lot more babies, immigration is the only way to 
fix that deficit.
  Not convinced? Well, think about how the Federal budget works. Most 
of our budget is social insurance--working-age Americans paying into 
accounts that pay benefits to older, nonworking Americans. You need a 
balance between the two in order to not go bankrupt. Many of our 
competitor nations around the world are spiraling toward this 
demographic cataclysm. By 2030, the median age in Japan, with strict 
immigration policies, is going to be over 50. It is extraordinary. Do 
you want to know why Germany is so interested in bringing refugees into 
their country? Because without them, their median age in 2030 will be 
48. Budgets simply can't work with that many retirees and that few 
workers. Because of America's liberal immigration policy, our average 
age, which today is 38, will increase in 2030 to just 39. During that 
time, China--another country that doesn't really allow immigration--
will go from having a median age that is 2 years younger than that of 
the United States to 3 years older.
  In 2010, undocumented immigrants and their employers sent $13 billion 
to Social Security. Without them, the trust fund would be out of money 
today.
  You are not there yet? Let's talk jobs. Just ask your farmers in your 
State how important lower skilled immigration is to keeping their farms 
afloat. But let's talk about high-skilled jobs. Would it shock you to 
know that 31 percent of Ph.D. holders in this country are immigrants? 
It is amazing. And more than one-quarter of all high-quality patents in 
the United States are being granted to immigrants.
  How about a study from 3 years ago that Senator Cortez Masto referred 
to that found that immigrants are twice as likely as native-born 
Americans to start a business. That is not good enough for you? Here is 
a mind blower: 43 percent of Fortune 500 companies in the United States 
were founded or cofounded by an immigrant or a child of an immigrant. 
You know who they are. The founder of eBay came to the United States 
from France, where he was born to Iranian parents. Google's cofounder, 
Sergey Brin, emigrated with his family from Russia when he was 6.

[[Page S950]]

Elon Musk, who started SpaceX, which has 4,000 employees, came from 
South Africa. Daniel Aaron, who cofounded Comcast, was a refugee of 
Nazi Germany. Henry Ford was an Irish immigrant. Estee Lauder's family 
was Hungarian. Herman Hollerith, one of the founders of IBM, had German 
parents. You don't want Ford or IBM or Google to be part of the 
American story? Then keep saying immigrants are an economic drain.
  Margaret Thatcher once marveled of America: ``No other nation has so 
successfully combined people of different races and nations within a 
single culture.'' This combination is our definition as a nation, but 
it is also the story of our economic greatness, of our sprawling leap 
in under two short centuries from an idea to the biggest, most dynamic 
economy on the face of the planet. To deny that history or to 
misremember it would be perhaps an irreversible error.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Iowa.
  Mr. GRASSLEY. Mr. President, some of what I just heard, I can readily 
agree to. Certain things, such as that we are a nation of immigrants--
no doubt about that. We need immigrants. We take roughly 800,000 to 1 
million legal immigrants a year. They are welcomed. We also, though, 
are a nation of laws, and as a nation of laws, we want people to come 
here according to our laws and abide by the laws.
  We are working with a group of people. If you call them DACAs, it 
would be about 800,000. If you refer to them as Dreamers, it is maybe 
1.8 million. We obviously have sympathy for them because as a baby 
brought here in diapers by a person or family who crossed our border 
without papers, hence entering our country illegally--we don't 
attribute the sin and the unlawfulness of the parent to the baby. A lot 
of that has happened.
  There is a general agreement--maybe not everybody in my political 
party agrees with this, but I think 80 percent of them do--that we need 
to deal with people who are here through no fault of their own and give 
them legal status. That is the compassion we are showing for people who 
broke our laws by their parents doing it but not the kids doing it.
  I also didn't ever think we would be here today debating this because 
I went through the 2013 debate on immigration. The Senate passed a 
bill; the House of Representatives didn't take it up. I was in the 
minority at that time, both in the caucus that was in the minority as 
well as in the minority that voted against that bill, because I didn't 
think it did things the way I would do them. Everything died in the 
House of Representatives. Then, 2 years later, I became chairman of the 
Judiciary Committee. We have jurisdiction over immigration legislation. 
I could have spent 3 months on immigration during 2015 or 2016 and sent 
a bill to the House of Representatives that probably would have died, 
but I made up my mind early in my chairmanship that I wanted to do 
things that we could get passed. So over the period of the last 
Congress, my committee voted out 31 bills, all bipartisan, and 18 of 
them got to a Democratic President. In 2015 and 2016, I felt, why go 
through that process if it is going to die in the House of 
Representatives?

  Now, a year later, after the election of a President who campaigned 
so much against anything dealing with immigration and legalization of 
people who are here--even young people, whom he has now come to the 
conclusion we ought to legalize--I didn't think we would be having this 
debate, and somehow I think Members of the Democratic Party didn't 
think we would be having this debate. I think they probably were 
shocked 2 or 3 weeks ago when the government shut down and when the 
majority leader decided to make an agreement to bring up this issue. 
But here we are, debating an immigration bill that, quite frankly, I 
didn't think we would be debating. Here we are.
  Then, of course, we didn't do anything Monday. We didn't do anything 
on this issue Tuesday. I don't know whether we are going to have any 
votes today, but here we are debating immigration. We have a chance to 
do what Members of the other political party, as advocates for Dreamers 
and DACA kids--and we have them on this side but maybe not as vocal or 
as loyal as Democrats are on this issue. Somehow, we are now having a 
difficult time getting the issue up and getting something passed.
  I offer to my 99 colleagues something the President said he would 
sign. Maybe you don't like exactly what is in that proposal. Then get 
it up and amend it, and let's see what sort of compromise we can 
accomplish. But we are here because the leader said that we are going 
to work on this issue. It was something that the minority demanded. We 
ought to reach a conclusion on it and get something to the President of 
the United States.
  Once we knew that this issue was going to come up--and we knew that 
on September 5 when the President said that he was not going to 
continue the illegal approach to the DACA kids that President Obama 
did. We have reason to believe this from court decisions on older 
people where they ruled that the President didn't have the authority to 
do what he did with the DACA kids. In fact, at least a dozen times 
before he made that decision, he was telling the entire country he 
didn't have the authority to do it, and then he went ahead and did it.
  So this President comes in, takes an oath to uphold the Constitution 
and the laws of this country, and he decides that he can't continue 
what was considered illegal activity by the previous President. This is 
a congressional decision that needs to be made, and Congress ought to 
make it. We were told on September 5 to do something by March 5, and 
here we are.
  I heard from the previous speaker--and maybe a lot of speakers--that 
this is the President's plan. Yes, this is something that the President 
said that he is going to support and will sign, but I want to say to 
you that the work that a group of us Senators have put into this issue 
over a period of the last 3 months, with about 18 meetings, 4 meetings 
with the President of the United States to discuss the issue--most of 
what is in the proposal that is put before you are things that a group 
of Senators put together. I would say that as our group met, we 
probably had subgroups of three who had different views, and some of 
them felt strongly about their positions, but everyone came together in 
a compromise that you see here before us in my amendment.
  In some of those meetings, we discussed these things with the 
President, and I want to give the President credit. In a January 9 
meeting that he had where he called together 23 of us--bipartisan and 
bicameral--we were able to dial down all the things that we would be 
discussing on immigration, and we came to the conclusion that there 
were four main points that we ought to be dealing with. You have heard 
of these as the four pillars, but let me repeat them.
  No. 1 was legalization of these children who were brought here by 
their parents; No. 2 was border security; No. 3 was chain migration; 
and No. 4, diversity visa. We discussed these things with the 
President, and I suppose the President probably emphasized citizenship 
to a greater extent than maybe we did in our deliberations, but we have 
something that has been put together by Members of this body who have 
compromised, with none of us getting everything we wanted. We are 
fortunate enough to have the President's backing on this.
  So I hope that you see this, not as we have heard from the other side 
as the President's plan--as if seven of us who introduced this proposal 
somehow just took something from the White House and put our names on 
it, and it is here before the U.S. Senate--because that isn't how it 
worked.

  I want to address some of the issues that have been put before us by 
people on the other side. I want to express--as you probably have seen 
me expressing already in my remarks so far--my frustration with the 
current status of the immigration debate here in the U.S. Senate. It 
amazes me that my colleagues on the other side of the aisle simply 
aren't ready to have a serious immigration debate. They have been 
demanding to have this debate for months. They have even shut the 
government down to get to this point, and now we are actually on this 
issue that they have been demanding that we debate for months during 
this Congress--some on the other side of the aisle for

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years--and now when it is time to put up or shut up, they have come up 
emptyhanded. Despite having weeks to prepare, Senate Democrats are 
still rushing to put some plan together.
  Let that sink in. Think about this just for a moment. The Senate 
Democrats recklessly shut down the Federal Government over immigration, 
and they did it over plans that they still largely haven't drafted. 
That should be very frustrating, not only to this Senator but to most 
of my colleagues, and it is exactly why the American people seem to 
have less faith in this process in Washington, DC. Even more 
frustrating is that for 2 valuable days, they have refused to allow the 
Senate to debate immigration measures.
  I do understand why the Democrats are afraid to vote on ending 
sanctuary cities. Those policies of sanctuary cities are massively 
unpopular with the American people. In other words, the American people 
feel that when the Constitution says that immigration law is one of the 
18 powers of the United States, then no local or State government 
should be able to interfere with what the Constitution says is the 
supreme law of the land.
  I can't understand why, for 2 days, Democrats have refused to allow 
us a debate on an issue like sanctuary cities. That amendment would 
help us keep our communities safe from dangerous criminals, besides 
carrying out the intent of the Constitution that the Federal Government 
has complete authority over immigration.
  Who could be against an approach to send a signal that sanctuary 
cities aren't justified when that is how to protect the American people 
from the criminal elements that some sanctuary cities protect? 
Apparently, the Democrats are, since they don't seem to be for 
outlawing sanctuary cities.
  I guess another way to say it is that they could do more to protect 
hard-working Americans from the criminal element that is, albeit, a 
small part of the immigration community we are talking about, but it 
still creates havoc for people like the Steinle family, for example, 
where Kate was murdered by an alien who was a felon who had returned to 
this country not once but five times.
  In other words, I have to ask my colleagues whether enforcement 
issues are legitimately a part of the immigration debate, and that is 
what the sanctuary city situation is all about. Isn't border security 
more than just throwing money at infrastructure? Shouldn't we be 
discussing how to reform our Nation's laws so that dangerous criminal 
elements can't inflict harm on innocent families?
  I am pretty sure--I am actually 100 percent confident--the answer to 
those questions is yes. Those are important issues to the American 
people. Those issues used to be discussed here.
  I have already mentioned the name of Kate Steinle, who was murdered 
by one of these people. I could add the names of Sarah Root and Jamel 
Shaw. These people all had dreams, too, but they had their lives ended 
by felons who had been deported but had come back into this country.
  If my colleagues were actually serious about debating this issue, we 
would be discussing border enforcement. Sadly, it seems as though the 
plans that I have seen so far from my colleagues fall short of that 
goal.
  Legalizing Dreamers--yes, who is going to argue with that? A little 
bit of money for border security--there is a lot to argue about there. 
But not doing something about criminal aliens who are a threat to law 
enforcement in this country and to the safety of our country--it seems 
to me that ought to be a part of it.
  So we get all the people in this room who say they want to do 
something about border security by throwing money at it; yet they 
refuse to actually give our law enforcement the legal tools that they 
need to protect Americans. Just a wall or whatever you want to call 
it--electric surveillance, more border patrol--it is all border 
security, but it is more than a wall. It takes more than just those 
things to protect the American people.
  I am here to tell you that it is a tragedy that some people in this 
body just want to legalize some people for 1 year, 2 years, or 3 years 
and put maybe a little bit of money into border security with no 
commitment to the future. Then all we have done is kick the can down 
the road.
  Worse still, none of my colleagues' proposals are being developed in 
a way that they can actually become law. Maybe for them, simply passing 
a partisan bill is enough. Leader Schumer said that this morning, and I 
was here listening to him. But that is not enough for this Senator. 
This Senator actually wants to see something passed into law that will 
provide real protection for DACA kids.

  That is why I have offered an amendment that could actually pass the 
House of Representatives, and we know the President would sign it. 
Polls show that the framework a number of us developed, along with the 
President's input, is overwhelmingly popular. A Harvard Harris poll 
showed that 65 percent of the voters agreed with our plan, including 64 
percent of Democratic voters. So despite the hyperbole we hear from our 
colleagues, the plan that the President said he would sign is not only 
popular, but, again, it is the only plan that has any chance of 
becoming law.
  It is time for all of my colleagues to get serious about fixing DACA. 
It is time to stop posturing, to stop showboating, and to stop simply 
trying to pass a bill out of the Senate that will not get considered in 
the other body and will not be signed by the President of the United 
States.
  The focus ought to be on making actual law. If all of us here in the 
Senate, particularly those who are in the Democratic Caucus, focus on 
those things, then the choice for them will be very clear. They will 
vote for the amendment that the seven of us have put before the Senate 
called the Grassley amendment, they will back the President, and they 
will provide real security and real certainty to the DACA recipients 
and the American people.
  In fact, it is so simple for some on the other side who have been 
promising DACA certainty for years and some for a few months, but, more 
importantly, really strongly over the last three or four months. It is 
an opportunity for everything you have told those kids, including that 
you are going to get them legal and even give them a path to 
citizenship that you can deliver.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Pennsylvania.
  Mr. CASEY. Mr. President, I rise to speak about the issue that we are 
dealing with on the floor, and I am grateful for this opportunity.
  I wanted to first of all stress the critical urgency that we act to 
protect America's Dreamers. The United States is a proud Nation of 
immigrants. Yet in September the administration insulted our values by 
announcing a decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals 
Program, which we know by the acronym DACA.
  Dreamers are young people who have lived in our country since they 
were children. They are law-abiding residents who have learned English. 
They have paid taxes, and they have secured jobs to support themselves 
and their families. Our government promised them that they would be 
protected if they came forward, and now the administration, at least so 
far, has broken that promise.
  Democrats have been fighting for something on the Dream Act since the 
administration first announced its decision on DACA more than 5 months 
ago. We have yet to vote on a single piece of bipartisan legislation to 
protect Dreamers. I do, however, commend the bipartisan work of a 
number of my colleagues in both parties who have come to the table to 
draft legislation that protects Dreamers and secures our border.
  With hundreds--soon to be thousands--of Dreamers losing protection 
every day, it is critical that we come together to pass bipartisan 
legislation that will provide permanent protections for these 
remarkable young people. Dreamers are deeply integrated into 
communities across Pennsylvania, as well as in a lot of other States 
and across our country, of course. Dreamers work as nurses, caring for 
our families. They work as teachers, educating our children, and as 
servicemen and servicewomen in our military, working to keep us safe.
  Take a young Pennsylvania Dreamer whom I met a few months ago--way 
back, I guess, in September. She was

[[Page S952]]

studying to be a nurse. Talking about her own life, she said:

       All I want to do is heal people. All I want to do is be a 
     nurse.

  Then she became very upset thinking about whether or not she might 
have that opportunity because of what had not happened in Washington--
no legislation passed to protect her.
  Another Dreamer from Lancaster, PA--the Presiding Officer knows that 
part of our State well--is Audrey Lopez. Audrey was brought to the 
United States from Peru when she was just 11 years old. Audrey spent 
most of her childhood in Pennsylvania, and her parents instilled in her 
the value of hard work and education. Like so many Dreamers, Audrey 
only learned that she was undocumented when she was applying to college 
and learned that she did not have a Social Security number. Despite not 
having access to financial aid, Audrey worked hard, and she graduated 
from college.
  After graduation, she took a job in public service working at Church 
World Services, assisting refugees with resettlement. This past fall, 
Audrey accepted a nearly full scholarship to American University, where 
she will obtain a master's degree in international development.
  Audrey is an American in every way but not on paper. She is 
continuing to work hard, despite not knowing if she will have a future 
in the country she calls home.
  We should be supporting young, hard-working people like Audrey who 
want to work in the service of others and our Nation. Instead, some, 
but not all--not all--Republicans are threatening her future--not only 
her future, but our Nation's future--by making us less safe and, 
frankly, damaging our economy. Protecting Dreamers is not only the 
right thing to do, but it is also good for the American economy, and it 
is in our national security interests.
  DACA has enabled almost 800,000 young people to grow and thrive in 
America, including about 5,900 in Pennsylvania. As part of the fabric 
of our community, these impressive young people, like Audrey, provide 
an enormous contribution to our society, including paying an estimated 
$2 billion each year in State and local taxes.
  By contrast, repealing DACA would amount to a loss of $460.3 billion 
from the national GDP over the next decade. So if you want to do it by 
year, it is roughly $46 billion a year for each of the 10 years.
  In Pennsylvania, ending DACA would result in an annual loss of $357.1 
million to the State GDP, according to the Center for American 
Progress.
  Currently, about 900 Dreamers are serving in the U.S. military and 
more than one out of every seven DACA-eligible immigrants has language 
skills that are currently in short supply in the U.S. military. It 
makes no sense to remove these Dreamers from a country they call home. 
I believe it is both wrong and dangerous.
  The American people overwhelmingly support allowing Dreamers to stay 
in the United States. It is about time Congress listened to the nearly 
80 percent of Americans who want to pass protections for Dreamers, 
along with increased border security so we can prevent this situation 
in the future.
  So it is time for action. We need a real compromise solution that 
will get 60 votes in the Senate and, of course, 218 votes in the House, 
and a signature from the President of the United States.
  While I have advocated in the past for a clean vote on the bipartisan 
Dream Act, which is what I would prefer, compromise will be critical to 
ensuring we get something done and sent to the President's desk.
  In 2013, I and many others--67 other Senators--voted for a bipartisan 
immigration bill that would have doubled the number of Border Patrol 
agents. That bill also would have mandated 24-hour surveillance of the 
border using advanced technology, like drones, and it would have 
provided a pathway to citizenship for law-abiding immigrants.
  There are a number of bipartisan proposals to pair Dreamer 
protections with data-driven, sensible border security that focuses on 
public safety.
  I look forward to finally voting on these issues, and I hope my 
Republican colleagues will continue to work with us to secure our 
border and ensure that Dreamers like Audrey Lopez have a future they 
can count on.
  I yield the floor.
  I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The bill clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. TOOMEY. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order for 
the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Gardner). Without objection, it is so 
ordered.
  Mr. TOOMEY. Mr. President, I want to speak about our immigration 
debate and my amendment in particular, but first let me say we are 
going to find out just how serious our colleagues are about granting 
not just legal status to the Dreamers--people who came to this country 
or were brought here illegally when they were children and couldn't and 
shouldn't be held accountable for that action. The proposal that will 
be available for a vote later this week will not just grant legal 
status but will actually grant a path to citizenship.
  It goes well beyond the illegal Executive order President Obama 
issued, and it will be available to far more people than those who took 
up President Obama's illegal Executive order. It is really going to be 
an extraordinary moment. I hope we are able to reach an agreement on 
this because I think this needs to get done.
  Mr. President, I want to first address an amendment I have offered 
that is now up and pending--and I think we will be voting on it at some 
point this week--which is all about keeping our communities safer by 
addressing the terrible problem of sanctuary cities. This is a problem 
that one father in particular knows all too well.
  On July 1 of 2015, Jim Steinle was walking arm in arm with his 
daughter Kate on a pier in San Francisco. Suddenly, a gunman sprang out 
and opened fire, hitting Kate. She pleaded, ``Help me, Dad,'' as she 
bled to death in her father's arms.
  Now, any murder is appalling, but one of the things that makes this 
even more appalling is that the shooter should never have been on the 
pier that day. The fact is, he was an illegal immigrant who had been 
convicted of seven felonies and had been deported five times, but even 
more galling is, 3 months before the day he murdered Kate Steinle, this 
murderer was in the custody of the San Francisco Police Department. 
They had him. He was in custody. They had him on an old warrant for a 
previous crime.
  When the Department of Homeland Security found out that the San 
Francisco Police Department had this guy in custody, they immediately 
reached out and said: Hold this guy until we can get someone there to 
take him into custody. We know he is dangerous, we know he is here 
illegally, and we want to get him out of this country, but the San 
Francisco Police couldn't provide that minimal cooperation. Instead, 
they released this man back onto the streets from which, 3 months 
later, he murdered young Kate Steinle.
  Why would the police of San Francisco do a thing like that? Why in 
the world would they refuse to provide this minimal cooperation with 
immigration authorities with respect to a dangerous individual? The 
reason is because San Francisco is a sanctuary city. That means it has 
as its explicit legal policy a prohibition that forbids their police 
from cooperating with Federal immigration officials, even if the police 
want to. It extends to other law enforcement, like sheriffs and deputy 
sheriffs.
  This is the case even when local law enforcement authorities believe 
the person is dangerous, and the local law enforcement folks wish to 
cooperate with the Federal authorities because they know this person is 
a threat to the security of their community, but local politicians 
override the police and decide this will be a sanctuary city.
  Such is the case with San Francisco, and so the San Francisco Police 
had no choice. They were required by local laws to release this man 
onto the streets.
  One of the many ironies about sanctuary cities is if Federal 
officials had called the San Francisco Police about any number of other 
crimes--robbery, car theft, violating a trademark, counterfeiting--any 
number of other Federal crimes, then the San Francisco Police would 
have been allowed to cooperate. They would have been happy

[[Page S953]]

to cooperate. They would have been able to cooperate, but because the 
crime was committed by an illegal immigrant, the police's hands were 
tied. The police were forced to release Kate Steinle's killer.
  It is just unbelievable to me that we have communities across the 
country that wish to provide this special privilege--this special 
protection--for even dangerous criminals because they are here 
illegally. It is unbelievable, but that is the case.
  Sadly, the Steinles are not alone. They are not the only family who 
has been affected this way because, of course, San Francisco is not our 
Nation's only sanctuary city. Philadelphia--the fifth largest city in 
America, the largest city in my home State--has an extreme sanctuary 
city policy, and it has had appalling consequences already.
  Maybe the most heartbreaking of these is the case of Ramon Aguirre-
Ochoa. Ochoa was a Honduran national in the United States illegally. He 
was deported in 2009, but he illegally reentered the United States, 
which is itself a felony. He found his way to Philadelphia, and in 2015 
the Philadelphia Police arrested him on charges of aggravated assault 
and various other crimes. When the background check went through, the 
Department of Homeland Security saw that the Philadelphia Police had 
this guy. They knew who this guy was. They knew he was here illegally, 
they knew he had been deported, and they believed him to be the 
dangerous criminal that he was. So they asked the Philadelphia Police: 
Could you hold this guy for 24, 48 hours, until we can get an agent 
there to take him into custody and begin deportation proceedings? We 
know he is a bad guy. We want him out of the country.

  Unfortunately, Philadelphia Police had to refuse. Instead, they 
released him onto the city streets in January 2015. The Philadelphia 
D.A. didn't feel like he had enough evidence to prosecute the case. He 
dropped the charges, and rather than cooperate with the Department of 
Homeland Security, they released Ochoa back onto the streets of 
Philadelphia.
  That was January of 2015. In July of 2016, Ochoa was arrested for 
raping a child under the age of 13. This brutal attack on the child was 
only possible because Philadelphia is a sanctuary city. It is these 
appalling cases--like the Steinle case or this case in Philadelphia--
that make it so important that we end these sanctuary cities if it is 
at all possible to do so.
  My amendment is a bipartisan amendment. It is identical to a bill I 
introduced and the Senate voted to consider in 2016. I reintroduced it 
in 2017. It does two things: It tackles a legal liability for 
localities that wish to cooperate with the Department of Homeland 
Security, and, with that legal liability problem solved, it imposes 
penalties on communities that choose nevertheless to be sanctuary 
cities.
  We don't have the authority as a Federal Government to dictate the 
policy that a local community must follow. There is a constitutional 
separation that gives them the power to do what they will, but we don't 
have to subsidize their behavior when it endangers all of us, and that 
is what my legislation goes after. So let me discuss first the legal 
liability issue.
  There are now at least two court decisions that have put pressure on 
municipalities, localities, to be sanctuary cities. Over a dozen 
Pennsylvania counties have done so. One is a Third Circuit decision; 
the second is a Federal district court in Oregon. They have held that 
if the Department of Homeland Security makes a mistake and they make a 
detainer request--let's say it is a case of wrongful identity. They ask 
a local police force to hold someone who, in fact, is an American 
citizen, should be here and is here legally, and so it is therefore an 
erroneous detention. If that happens and the local law enforcement 
folks comply with that request, under these court decisions, the local 
municipality can be held liable for the ensuing litigation on the part 
of the person who is wrongly detained.
  My bill addresses this problem by simply saying that when a local law 
enforcement officer complies with an immigration detainer request from 
DHS that is a duly issued and bona fide request, then the local officer 
has the same authority as a DHS official. In a way, the officer would 
be considered an agent of the Department of Homeland Security for this 
purpose, and the entity the person would then sue in the event that a 
person is wrongly detained and their civil rights are violated would be 
the Federal Government. The responsibility should be on the Federal 
Government, since it was, after all, a request that initiated with the 
Federal Government.
  My legislation does not in any way curb an individual's ability to 
file a suit if their civil or constitutional rights are violated, 
whether it is intentional or accidental. There is no curb on an 
individual's ability to redress that if they were wrongfully detained. 
It simply transfers the liability from the municipality to the 
origination of the detainer request, which is the Department of 
Homeland Security.
  So that is the first part: solve the legal liability problem which 
has some municipalities across America--certainly in my State of 
Pennsylvania--choosing to be sanctuary cities, even though they would 
rather not be.
  Now, having addressed that, if our legislation is adopted, and we 
have thereby solved this legal liability problem, if a community 
nevertheless decides it is going to endanger all the rest of us by 
conferring this special protection on somebody just because they came 
here illegally--despite the fact that they may well be a dangerous 
criminal--in that case, under my amendment, that community will be 
deemed a sanctuary city, and under my amendment several types of 
Federal funding would be withheld from it. Specifically, we would 
withhold from the sanctuary cities community development block grants 
and certain grants from the Economic Development Administration.

  I think this is eminently reasonable. Sanctuary cities impose costs 
on all of us. They raise the cost to the Federal Government of 
enforcing immigration law, but by far outweighing that is the cost to 
the American people of more crime and the unbelievable, staggering cost 
to families like Jim Steinle and his family, who lost their daughter. I 
think it is extremely reasonable to have as a policy that if a 
community chooses to impose those costs on the rest of us, the Federal 
Government will not be subsidizing it.
  Let me debunk some of the misinformation that is occasionally 
disseminated about my amendment. One is that it is somehow anti-
immigrant. This is not anti-immigrant at all; this is pro-immigrant.
  The fact is, the vast, overwhelming majority of immigrants in 
America, legal and illegal, would never commit these terrible crimes; 
there is no question about that. It is also obviously the case that any 
very large number of people will include some criminals among them.
  There are roughly 11 million people who are here illegally--11 
million illegal immigrants in the United States. Some of them are 
certainly violent criminals. It makes no sense to insulate those 
violent criminals, however few they may be, from capture by law 
enforcement. It would be absurd to allege that this is somehow anti-
immigrant when quite likely some of their victims will be other 
immigrants. Immigrants want to live in safe communities too. I am 
positive of that. They don't want dangerous criminals to be able to 
walk the streets just because they came here illegally.
  The second point I want to stress is that this amendment does not 
discourage or punish illegal immigrants for coming forward to report a 
crime. This is important because folks who want to keep sanctuary 
cities sometimes charge that if my legislation were passed, victims and 
witnesses to crimes, if they are here illegally, wouldn't come forward. 
That is not so. My amendment in this underlying law explicitly states 
that a locality will not be labeled a sanctuary jurisdiction for this 
purpose, and therefore will not lose any Federal funds, if it has a 
policy stating that if a person comes forward as a victim or a witness 
to a crime, local law enforcement will not share information with DHS.
  Let me be clear and explicit about this. We have an explicit carve-
out in the legislation. If a locality chooses to provide sanctuary 
status to a victim of a crime or a witness to a crime, such a community 
would not lose any Federal funds whatsoever. We think that

[[Page S954]]

makes sense because we do want to encourage victims and witnesses of 
crimes to come forward. We get it. We don't want to create a worry that 
there would be deportation consequences for them.
  A third point which some have alleged and which I want to be very 
clear about is that the penalties my amendment has for a community that 
chooses to be a sanctuary city do not include the loss of any funds 
whatsoever related to law enforcement or security. That is simply not 
the case. The list of categories that we include in lost funding is 
economic development in its nature. It is not at all law enforcement.
  Another point that some on the other side have made is that somehow 
this legislation, my amendment, would impose an unmanageable burden on 
law enforcement. One simple fact to consider is, if that is the case, 
then why has it been endorsed by law enforcement groups? The National 
Association of Police Organizations has endorsed my amendment. The 
International Union of Police Associations, a division of AFL-CIO, has 
endorsed my amendment. The Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association 
has endorsed my amendment. Would these groups endorse a bill that 
imposed an unworkable burden on their own members? I rather doubt it. I 
think they understand that this amendment encourages local law 
enforcement to share information with the Department of Homeland 
Security and in some cases to temporarily and briefly hold people in 
custody until the Department of Homeland Security can get there.
  This is a bipartisan amendment. In 2016, when the Senate voted on 
this very same amendment in the form of a freestanding bill, it 
received a majority, and it had bipartisan support. Unfortunately, a 
minority filibustered it and blocked it. But the fact is, it is a 
bipartisan piece of legislation with majority support. I don't think it 
should even be controversial.
  I think we will have a vote on this relatively soon, in the coming 
days. I hope it will have very broad support. This is common sense. It 
stands for the principle that the safety of the American people 
matters, that the lives of Kate Steinle and other victims of violent 
crime matter, and that all of our communities should be as safe as they 
can be.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Connecticut.


                   Parkland, Florida, School Shooting

  Mr. BLUMENTHAL. Mr. President, watching the pictures today as I came 
to the floor was deeply moving. Even though there is much that we don't 
know and a lot of information that we lack about what is happening at 
Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL, the images of 
emergency vehicles and emergency responders and of young people and 
children evacuating a school after another tragic incident of gun 
violence brings back memories that are searing and harrowing. Once 
again, we feel that churning in our stomach, that sense of gut-punch, 
and a wrenching of hearts that reminds us of how we felt the day of 
violence in Newtown. Yet another school is victimized by gun violence.
  We are waiting to learn more of the details, but certainly our hearts 
and prayers go to the victims and their loved ones. Our gratitude goes 
to the courageous first responders who are on the scene now 
apprehending the shooter and administering to the victims and 
survivors. My thoughts and prayers are with those students, emergency 
responders, parents, loved ones, and the community of Parkland.
  Again, gun violence respects no boundaries. It spares no communities. 
It victimizes all of us, wherever it happens and whenever, including 
the gun violence that kills people every day individually, often 
unpublicized and invisible.
  My heart breaks to hear that one more school is facing this 
unthinkable horror, that again this harrowing scene plays before the 
people of America, literally unfolding in real-time. I know that I and 
all of the Members of this Chamber share the grief and sympathy and 
heartbreak that community is experiencing today.
  Mr. President, I want to talk about the Connecticut Dreamers and 
share their stories and call for this Chamber to take narrow and 
focused action to prevent their draconian mass deportation and protect 
them from that kind of very unfortunate outcome.
  The Dreamers who would be covered under legislation, which I hope 
will pass in the next 24 hours, came here as children. They grew up as 
Americans. This country is the only one they know. English is the only 
language many of them speak. They go to our schools. They serve in our 
military. They support our economy. They believe in the American dream. 
All of us believe in the American dream, but so do they. They work hard 
and give back.
  Deporting the Dreamers would be cruel, irrational, and inhumane--
unworthy of a great country. It would break our promise to the Dreamers 
who came forward when they were told they would be given protected 
status and would be a violation not only of the American dream but of 
the promise made by a great nation.
  Gabriela Valdiglesias came to the United States in 2001 from Lima, 
Peru. She has lived in Connecticut for 17 years. She works for 
Connecticut Students for a Dream, advocating for her fellow Dreamers. 
For those workers, she has been working on securing their right to 
safety, to higher education, to healthcare, and to live in a country 
without fear and discrimination.
  She shared with me some of the difficulties her family had while she 
was growing up. She and her five siblings are supported by their 
parents, who work in minimum-wage jobs. She hopes that if the Dream Act 
passes, she will be able to take on some of the economic burden her 
parents now carry. She hopes she will be able to make enough money to 
support herself and her family.
  She is currently in her first year of college, at a community 
college, where she has faced many financial challenges. Not being able 
to get a job at 18 years old is frustrating and sometimes devastating. 
If the Dream Act is passed, she could finish her 2 years at community 
college and transfer to a 4-year institution, and she could pursue her 
dream of working as a lawyer or in the field of law.
  There are countless other stories of Connecticut Dreamers, some 
wanting to keep their identities confidential. There is a young man in 
Bridgeport who was brought to Connecticut at the age of 5. He was 
educated in the Bridgeport public schools. He majored in chemistry and 
now attends Fairfield University. He has excelled there. He finished 
his first degree and was accepted at the University of California, 
Berkeley's physical chemistry program. He had to live under the threat 
of deportation because he had no way to apply for permanent lawful 
status. While he was continuing his studies here, he lived with the 
threat of deportation.
  There is a New Britain woman who was born in Mexico and brought to 
America when she was 6 years old. The journey was terrifying. She could 
barely understand what was happening. She had no idea at 6 years old 
that she was entering America in a way that would affect her for the 
rest of her life. It was not her choice to come here or to come here in 
that way, but it has affected her. In fact, despite her attending 
school and then going to college out of State at Bay Path University 
and earning a great many leadership positions there, she remains in the 
limbo of uncertainty and anguish and anxiety created by the threat of 
deportation. She dreams about helping people, making sure that families 
with low incomes can have access to occupational therapy. She is 
pursuing a master's degree in occupational therapy.
  Finally, there is a woman I know who came here from Venezuela. She 
was brought here when she was 11 years old. She remembers her mother 
telling her that she was going to America to learn English. When they 
settled in Norwalk, CT, her mother also told her that she could be 
successful if she were bilingual. She began to go to school right away. 
Life was difficult at the beginning, and there was a lot to learn. By 
the time she was a junior in high school, she stopped trying to get 
perfect grades because she feared colleges would not accept her, and 
even if they accepted her, she could not be eligible for financial 
assistance because she was undocumented.

  But she persevered, and she attended community college. She went on 
to Western Connecticut State University, and she overcame obstacles 
that for many Americans born here would be

[[Page S955]]

insuperable. Now facing deportation, she fears all of those dreams and 
all of that work will be for naught.
  These Dreamers, in fact, have trusted America. They believed in 
America's promise to them. Coming forward, providing facts about their 
residence, their family, their job, and Social Security number, they 
believed in America. It wasn't a dream. America is to be trusted. 
America is the land of opportunity. America is the greatest Nation in 
the history of the world. They have a dream that is American, which is 
that they will have the opportunity to pursue their full potential as 
human beings to give back, to educate themselves, and to better their 
lives. That is the American dream.
  In Dr. Martin Luther King's ``I Have a Dream'' speech, he said:

       When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent 
     words of the Constitution and the Declaration of 
     Independence, they were signing a promissory note . . . a 
     promise that all men--

  And he might have added women--

     would be guaranteed the inalienable rights of life, liberty, 
     and the pursuit of happiness.

  The time has long since come for us to help the Dreamers. The time is 
today for us to protect them against mass draconian deportation, a 
violation of a promise that would be unworthy of America.
  The promissory note of this American dream can be made a reality by 
this Chamber today and tomorrow.
  I understand that some of my colleagues may want to change the 
immigration system. It is truly a broken system in need of 
comprehensive reform. That task is for another day. Today, we must make 
sure that we provide these Dreamers with legal status and a path to 
citizenship. That is our moral obligation. That is our job. Let's get 
it done.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Oklahoma.
  Mr. LANKFORD. Mr. President, the Senate is probably interested in the 
status of the debate on immigration. This debate started in September 
in hallways, committee rooms, and in our offices--opportunities for us 
to talk about these issues now for months.
  Several weeks ago, there was a government shutdown demanding that we 
actually have a vote on immigration right now or that we don't reopen 
the government. After 3 days of government shutdown, the government was 
reopened, demanding that we move the immigration debate earlier to make 
sure we would get this done earlier. Now it is Wednesday of the week 
that it was supposed to occur, and the proposals are not out on the 
table. It has been a frustrating journey.
  I can't even begin to count the number of hours I have spent in 
bipartisan conversations trying to circle around a simple set of 
issues. How do we resolve a small group of issues related to 
immigration?
  I thought this was resolved in some ways. Back in early January, 
there was a large bipartisan meeting with the House and Senate to 
discuss what was widely televised as the scope for immigration and the 
key issues we were going to address. It came down to four issues, and 
there was agreement among the leaders, among those in the room, that 
these are the only four issues we are going to deal with: DACA and 
those DACA-eligible and how we move them toward citizenship, border 
security and all the things around border security, diversity visa 
lottery, and family reunification. All of those have been dealt with in 
legislation before--in fact, for decades, in one version or another--
except for the issue of DACA. That one is new. That is the only one 
that hasn't been done with legislation before. The others all have.

  The Gang of 8 bill in 2013 had border security and all kinds of 
different issues related to both construction of walls, technology, and 
legal loopholes. It had diversity lottery. It had chain migration in 
it. If you want to go back to an immigration study during the Clinton 
administration, in 1995, there was a proposal put out by Barbara 
Jordan, the Democratic House Member from Texas, who led that particular 
study during the Clinton administration dealing with chain migration, 
dealing with how we transition to merit-based immigration.
  This has been dealt with literally in hearings for decades, but what 
I have heard for the past several months is that there is no time to do 
any of those things. The only time that we have is to deal with DACA. 
We can't even discuss anything else. Meeting after meeting after 
meeting since early November, I have heard the same thing: There is no 
time. There is no time. There is no time.
  Now we are getting down to the day, and there is still a conversation 
about how we deal with these four simple issues that we have talked 
about for months, that the House and Senate have debated for decades, 
and on which we have had an untold number of hearings for decades to 
try to actually land them, to get legislation ready, and to get this 
resolved.
  Let me just focus on a few things, because a few of us have put out a 
proposal that covers those four areas that was a middle-ground 
proposal. It is certainly not everything that I would like to have in 
border security, and it is certainly not everything that Democrats 
would like to have, but it is a middle ground between all of those. It 
is one the White House has already announced that they will certainly 
sign. It has 1.8 million people moving into naturalization, or 
citizenship. These are the individuals whose parents brought them 
illegally, but they were children at the time. Those individuals came 
into the country. They have now lived here for years. They know no 
other country, on the whole. Those individuals are offered an 
opportunity to become citizens of the United States 10 years from now.
  Why 10 years from now? That gives a time period of 10 years, which is 
commonly agreed that it will take to be able to secure the border. In 
that 10-year time period, the border security could be put in place to 
make sure we have a secure border. It is not an unreasonable thing. In 
that same 10-year time period, about 2 million people are going to 
move, actually, into citizenship.
  How does that affect the rest of our process? Well, let me tell you 
first how it affects it. Right now we have a 20-year backlog to be able 
to come into the United States legally--20 years to be able to come 
through that process. Once we add another 2 million people in that 
process and all the family that will be connected to them, in all 
likelihood, that backlog moves from 20 years to 25 years. It is 
ridiculous at 20 years, and it is even worse at 25.
  We all know that this issue of family migration and the broad 
allowance of people coming in, not based on what skills they have but 
based on being someone's brother-in-law, is not the best way to do 
immigration, and we are the only country that does it like this. 
Seventy percent of the people who come into our country legally come 
through a family connection--being someone's brother, being someone's 
sister, being a relative in some way that they are able to come into 
the country.
  Canada, just to our north, is exactly the opposite. Sixty-three 
percent of the people who come into Canada legally through their 
immigration system come because they are bringing a work skill. Now, I 
don't want to oppose anyone coming from anywhere in the world. There is 
a uniqueness to the United States and how we handle immigration, and we 
allow people from all over the world, from every country, to come. That 
should remain the same, but we should have one simple requirement: They 
come to bring something to the Nation. I don't think that is too hard 
of a hill to climb.
  It is not a matter of who you are related to. You certainly should be 
able to bring in your spouse and your children, but brothers and 
sisters and other adults and such that would be in your family, maybe, 
should come based on their own merit, as well, for them to be able to 
come and be a part of our great culture, as well, or they are able to 
come visit and come stay long periods of time but not necessarily come 
for citizenship, unless you are coming to bring them. Again, that 
doesn't seem too difficult.
  The diversity lottery hasn't been the challenging issue. Quite 
frankly, that has been an issue that was in the 2013 Gang of 8 bill, 
saying: Why do we have 50,000 visas for individuals from anywhere, from 
around the world, who can come who don't necessarily bring a skill at 
all? Why don't we just add a skill requirement or an educational 
requirement? We could say that you are welcome to come from anywhere, 
but at least we should know that those who

[[Page S956]]

are coming from anywhere and everywhere bring something to the American 
economy. Again, that hasn't been controversial nor partisan in the 
past, and now, suddenly, it has become that.
  The border security part of it has been the most confusing part of 
the debate for me on this thing. Months ago, some of my Democratic 
colleagues over and over said: The wall will do nothing. There is no 
benefit in the wall. If you put up a 20-foot wall, there will be a 21-
foot ladder. It will do absolutely nothing.
  Now, the conversation is this: Well, we will give citizenship to 
DACA, and we will give you some money to build a wall, and we will call 
it even. That has never been the request, and everyone knows it.
  The request has been border security, not just a wall. I am very 
aware that the President has talked about a big beautiful wall a lot. I 
get that. But it has always been about border security, not just about 
putting up a wall in certain places. There has never been an emphasis 
to build 2,000 miles of wall. There isn't a need for a wall in certain 
urban areas, but what is really needed is border security and everyone 
knows it. I don't understand why border security has suddenly become a 
controversial issue.
  What we have asked for and what we have laid out in a proposal seems 
to be a very middle-ground proposal. It doesn't do interior 
enforcement. Quite frankly, our Democratic colleagues have said: 
Absolutely no additional interior enforcement--we are open to border 
security, but nothing that secures the interior of the country.
  So we have said: OK, that will be a future bill dealing with interior 
enforcement, but we do feel like border security is very important.
  So they have said: OK, we will give you some money to build a wall in 
sections.
  Can I say what they are trying to exclude? Border security, when you 
lay it out, is also the legal loopholes. So here are just a few of the 
things that we have laid out, which I don't think should be that 
controversial, that we have included in our language and said: If we 
are going to do border security, let's be serious about it. For 
instance, we have asked for additional penalties for people who do 
human smuggling. Right now, it is a slap on the wrist if you do human 
smuggling into the country. So coyotes and others are able to do human 
smuggling into the country in transit.
  There are also people who are individuals in our country watching out 
for Border Patrol agents, radioing other people saying: Hey, Border 
Patrol is here. Go a different direction. They are actually helping to 
divert people away. We think we should increase the penalties. Our 
Democratic colleagues have pushed back and said no on that. It doesn't 
seem unreasonable to increase the penalties for human smuggling and the 
same for drug smuggling. To increase the penalties for those who are 
spying out and redirecting people who are doing drug smuggling doesn't 
seem too hard to be able to accomplish.

  We would like to allow an individual State and their National Guard 
to be able to participate with Border Patrol. Now the National Guard is 
not law enforcement. What does the National Guard bring, though? They 
bring helicopters that have infrared technology. They are able to fly 
over sections of the border to be able to see the area below and to 
help direct Border Patrol to it. To participate with the National Guard 
and allow them to bring some of those resources those States already 
have shouldn't be that difficult. That is just a part of border 
security, but our Democratic colleagues are pushing back on that.
  We would like to do an initiative to be able to work with Mexico and 
provide Mexico some additional funding and support and consultation on 
their border between Guatemala and Mexico, the southern border of 
Mexico--what is literally kind of our first border. It is their 
southern border. We have been pushed back, though, to say that is not 
border security. It is slowing down people illegally trafficking 
through Central America into Mexico. We think that is part of it.
  How about this one? All along the Rio Grande in Texas, there is 
Carrizo cane that are there--this large cane that grows in the river in 
that area. In that area, you are able to hide people, drugs--whatever 
it may be--in this tall cane because you just disappear in it. It is on 
both sides of the border. We think we should do an eradication of that 
cane so that you can actually see through it. It hasn't been 
controversial in the past, but suddenly it is controversial: No, we 
don't want to eradicate the cane.
  That cane is only there because it is hiding people and contraband. 
We think we should be able to do that.
  We think we should be able to add an electromagnetic spectrum at our 
border ports of entry so you can look through a vehicle, looking for 
chemical parts of the spectrum and to be able to see if we can 
eradicate drugs that are being trafficked into our country. I don't 
think that should be that controversial.
  There is getting secure communications so that our individuals and 
the Border Patrol can talk to each other and can interact with other 
law enforcement to make sure no one from a transnational criminal 
organization is listening in.
  We should have license plate readers at the port of entry to be able 
to help track that and speed it up.
  Doing biometrics at the entry and exit is something that has been 
required since the 9/11 Commission. So we can accelerate that process 
that as people come in and out of our country we know when they come in 
legally, but we also know when they depart legally.
  There is dealing with what is sometimes called catch and release. 
Individuals who come into the country and cross illegally into the 
country are held in detention for a short period of time until they get 
due process, and every individual gets due process. This is not trying 
to remove due process from anyone. But as they cross into the country 
illegally, we are able to pick them up, detain them, and make sure they 
have due process. Some of them make claims for asylum or make claims of 
credible fear or other things. Instead of doing a hearing on that, we 
actually give them a piece of paper that is called a notice to appear 
and release them into the country and say: We will see you in about 2 
years for your hearing date--instead of actually doing the hearing 
right then. Nothing has changed. No facts have changed. No information 
has changed. Nothing has changed during that time of delay. We just 
release them because we don't have enough judges or enough courts or 
enough attorneys or enough advocates to be able to accomplish that. So 
they are released for years in the country. You may be surprised to 
know that most of the individuals never show up for that hearing. They 
are just released into the country.
  There is also a statement saying: Well, what about unaccompanied 
minors? Again, you might be interested to know that three-fourths of 
the unaccompanied minors who cross into the country are actually 14 
years old or up. These are not 6-year-olds who are crossing in and 5-
year-olds who are crossing in. Most of them are older teenagers. Two-
thirds of the people who are coming in as unaccompanied minors are 
actually teenage boys, and most of them come in to be able to work. So 
the question is this: How do we handle that?
  I think we do fair detention. I think we go through the due process 
and make a decision right then. Again, you will be interested to know 
that for individuals who actually do show up for their court hearing, 
which is a small group, about 30 percent of those who go to the court 
hearing do get asylum once they finally get to the court hearing. But 
we are not getting to the court hearing for most of those individuals. 
That shouldn't be that controversial. We should be able to handle how 
we go through that process in an equitable and fair way.
  I would like us to be able to deal with the cost, quite frankly, of 
detention. We have asked for a simple part of this process on border 
security, to honor the taxpayer, to say that we will not spend more 
than $500 a night on housing individuals whom we have in detention. 
Now, I think most Americans--certainly most Oklahomans--would like to 
stay in a hotel that costs $500 a night. Putting a cap on how much we 
spend on that per person per night, I think, is a reasonable thing to 
be able to put into it, but we have had pushback.

[[Page S957]]

  We have asked for emergency immigration judges. Right now there are 
almost 700,000 people in a backlog in our immigration courts--almost 
700,000. We don't think it is unreasonable to ask for emergency judges 
to come in to help us with the backlog. We are not talking about 
untrained judges. We are talking about judges who are in the Federal 
system who are knowledgeable of these issues and to do a surge of 
judges to help us get caught up.
  We should be able to do all of these things. None of these issues 
should be controversial. This is what it means when you start talking 
about real border security, not just adding a wall in some places, not 
just adding a couple of additional agents but actually putting the 
things around them that they need to actually be able to enforce the 
law.
  I think people lose track of the fact that ICE folks and Customs and 
Border Patrol are not enemies of our State. They are American law 
enforcement. They work for our country to keep us safe and to enforce 
the laws of our Nation. I am appalled at the way they are spoken of on 
this floor and treated in conversations. They are American law 
enforcement enforcing American laws. If there is a problem with what 
they are enforcing, this body should vote on it and fix the law, not 
beat up on the people who are enforcing the law and doing what we have 
asked them to do as a Congress.
  I hope in the days ahead we can actually get this passed. I hope we 
can actually move toward citizenship for 1.8 million people, which the 
President has asked for, and I think it is a reasonable thing to be 
able to do for those individuals who came into our country as children. 
But I also hope that this time we don't say that we are going to do 
citizenship and not do border security. I hope we don't just throw some 
money and pretend we are doing it. I hope we, as a body, can have a 
serious conversation and say: Let's actually do border security and 
help us as a nation to establish a secure border. I hope we actually 
deal with some of the biggest issues on immigration and can walk 
through this debate in a reasonable way without the emotion and heat, 
but thinking this through because this affects the future of our 
country for a very long time.
  With that, I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Lee). The Senator from Delaware.
  Mr. COONS. Mr. President, I come to the floor to talk about an issue 
that has occupied this floor, this body, this Congress for some time 
now: the challenge of how to fix our broken immigration system. As many 
of us have debated and talked and tried to find common ground and a 
bipartisan path forward, I wanted to speak about why I have optimism 
that we can find a bipartisan solution to this challenge.
  I know I am not alone in my optimism about this. One of my very 
dearest friends in the Senate, someone I respect and admire deeply, 
someone who knows more about sacrifice and patriotism than anyone I 
have ever met, believes the same thing. This friend of mine is not just 
any Senator. It is Mr. John McCain, the senior Senator from Arizona, 
who also happens to be an American hero and someone who has literally 
fought for this country and its values throughout his entire life. He 
is someone whom our mutual friend, former Vice President Joe Biden, 
calls a ``man of . . . deep conviction, and unmatched character.''
  John McCain is exactly the person the Senate and this country needs 
in times like this, when the way forward is unclear, when our 
disagreements seem too wide, when our instincts are to argue rather 
than listen. This Chamber and this country need someone who is able to 
show us a way forward and lead us out of our stubborn, sometimes too 
partisan fights--someone like Senator McCain.
  As this debate has progressed in recent days, I have been reminded of 
something I heard Senator McCain say late last year when he accepted 
the Liberty Medal from the National Constitution Center in 
Philadelphia. When speaking about our country and when speaking about 
the opportunity he has had here, he said:

       What a privilege it is to serve this big, boisterous, 
     brawling, intemperate, striving, daring, beautiful, 
     bountiful, brave, magnificent country. With all our flaws, 
     all our mistakes, with all the frailties of human nature as 
     much on display as our virtues, with all the rancor and anger 
     of our politics, we are blessed. We are living in the land of 
     the free, the land where anything is possible. The land of 
     the immigrants' dream, the land with the storied past 
     forgotten in the rush to an imagined future.

  What a country, indeed. Beautiful, brave, and magnificent, as John 
said, but also challenged by occasional frailty, rancor, and anger that 
we have seen too much of in this sustained debate over immigration.
  The point Senator McCain made that night in Philadelphia--and the 
point he has made every day serving our Nation for more than six 
decades--is that working through our disagreements, our divisions is 
worth it, not just as Senators but as citizens.
  The whole point is, we may be boisterous and intemperate, which John 
has certainly also been accused of being a time or two, but we don't 
stop striving for our ideals, believing in our future, and respecting 
one another. That is often difficult--especially here in politics--but 
it is the challenge that comes with the blessings of living and serving 
this great country.
  So I was honored when Senator McCain reached out to me a week ago to 
say: Let's work together to introduce in the Senate legislation that 
could help solve our most pressing immigration issues and keep our 
country moving forward.
  The bipartisan bill we have introduced--the McCain-Coons bill--in the 
Senate doesn't solve every immigration issue we face, and it doesn't 
try to. What our bill does is focus on two issues right in front of us 
that I believe we can address and resolve. It is an attempt to break 
through what have been messy and divisive political debates and to 
address, through a compromise, legitimate, substantive issues in front 
of us.
  Our bill would do two things: secure our border and finally give 
Dreamers the pathway to citizenship they have long awaited for, and 
they deserve.
  First, to address border security, our bill would ensure we gain 
operational control of the border by 2020 with new technology, new 
resources for Federal, State, and local law enforcement, and new 
infrastructure.
  It would reduce the existing immigration case backlogs by funding new 
judges and new attorneys, while also addressing one of the root causes 
of migration into our country from Central America.
  Our legislation would give certainty to 1.8 million Dreamers brought 
here as children through no fault of their own, who are American in 
every way but the paperwork. Dreamers who continue to play by the rules 
by going to school, serving in the military, or being consistently 
employed can become lawful, permanent residents and, at least 5 years 
later, U.S. citizens.
  Senator McCain and I aren't the only ones who think this bipartisan 
solution makes sense. In fact, the reason we filed it here was because 
of the strength of its development in the other Chamber, the people's 
House, the House of Representatives. This bill was crafted by 
Republican Congressman Will Hurd of El Paso, TX, whose district has 
more than 800 miles of the U.S.-Mexico border--more than any district 
in our country with a U.S.-Mexico border--and his partner, Democratic 
Congressman Pete Aguilar, who is from Southern California. The two of 
them put this bill together after a lot of consultation and meetings 
with their colleagues in the House. Today, it enjoys 27 Republican 
cosponsors and 27 Democratic cosponsors. I often hear we shouldn't take 
up and consider anything that can't pass the House, but a bill that has 
54 bipartisan cosponsors in the House is certainly on the right track.
  Now, I am clear-eyed about the fact that this McCain-Coons bill is 
not perfect, and I understand some of my colleagues may want to make 
changes to it. Some of my Republican friends I have met with and heard 
from and talked to in recent days have suggested it needs more 
investments in border security to win their support, and that is fine 
because our bill is more than just a set of policies. It is a way to 
provide a framework for us to agree and not let our disagreements 
prevent us from moving forward.
  So my message is simple about this bill: We may not be able to fix 
our entire immigration system this week--in fact, I am certain we 
can't--but we can, over the next few days, perhaps

[[Page S958]]

even over the next few hours, take important, even historic steps 
forward. We can lay the groundwork for securing our border with new 
investments, new technology, and new manpower. We can help Dreamers 
succeed in American schools, serve in our American military, and enrich 
American communities without living in constant fear of imminent 
deportation.
  These are tough issues, but the solution can be fairly simple. I 
think our legislation offers a real solution for right now. There have 
been developments in recent days.
  I have been proud to participate in a large bipartisan effort by the 
Common Sense Coalition, and as it has, as a group, tried to hammer out 
a bipartisan deal, I have been honored to have started this discussion, 
this debate, with Senator McCain by filing our bill that we brought 
over from the House. It is a bipartisan bill that I believe is the most 
bipartisan bill currently before this Chamber on this issue. If we can 
make more progress, if we can attract more bipartisan support through 
some amendments or revisions, I welcome that.
  I believe this week, this day, this opening on our Senate floor is 
not only a challenge but an incredible opportunity to do the right 
thing. We don't have to agree on everything. We just have to agree on 
some things, and we can find a way forward together.
  It is an enormous honor to have the opportunity to partner with 
Senator McCain in this legislative effort. While he is not with us 
today, I know he is with us in spirit and watching our deliberations, 
and he is someone who has shown not just courage on the battlefield but 
courage in American politics--a determined willingness to compromise 
and to work tirelessly to advance the interests of the American people. 
I can only hope my colleagues, when we get a chance to vote on this 
bill--which I hope we will later today--will join me in supporting it 
in recognition of his lifetime of service to our Nation and his 
commitment to bipartisanship.
  It is my hope that as this day and tomorrow unfolds, we will have the 
open and fair process that has been promised, and that all of us, 
together, can do what we were sent to do: listen to each other, trust 
each other, work together, and find a path through compromise that can 
solve these two most important and pressing issues in the field of 
immigration.
  Thank you.
  I yield the floor.
  (The Acting President pro tempore assumed the Chair.)
  Mr. DURBIN. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order for 
the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Perdue). Without objection, it is so 
ordered.


                   Parkland, Florida, School Shooting

  Mr. DURBIN. Mr. President, every day in America we face the 
devastating reminder of the toll of gun violence. Today, we are 
watching the horrific scenes at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in 
Parkland, FL, where yet another school shooting has taken place. It is 
gut-wrenching. We know that so many families have just had their worlds 
and lives changed forever by senseless gun violence. Ironically, this 
is the 10th anniversary of a similar shooting at Northern Illinois 
University in DeKalb, IL. Our prayers go out to the victims, to the 
families, to the first responders, and, of course, to the Parkland 
community.


                     Honoring Commander Paul Bauer

  Yesterday, Mr. President, in the city of Chicago, which I am honored 
to represent, we lost one of our finest, Commander Paul Bauer of the 
Chicago Police Department. He was shot and killed by a gunman in the 
Chicago Loop.
  Commander Bauer was a 31-year veteran of the CPD and the commander of 
the 18th police district in the Near North Side. He was a pillar of 
that community. He was well-known in his district. He had been 
commended by the city council last year for a charity holiday party he 
helped to host for underprivileged kids.
  He was a husband to his wife Erin and a father to a 13-year-old 
daughter named Grace. Commander Bauer was at a training session 
yesterday in the Loop, but he didn't hesitate to help out his fellow 
officers when they were pursuing a fleeing suspect. Commander Bauer was 
shot several times by the suspect, and he died from his wounds.
  Chicago police superintendent Eddie Johnson said this was an 
extremely difficult day for the Chicago police family. Commander Bauer 
was a hero in life. He made the ultimate sacrifice to help protect the 
city he served and the city he loved. His loss is a tragedy.
  Our prayers go out to the commander's friends, colleagues, his loved 
ones, and, of course, his family and daughter.


       10th Anniversary of Northern Illinois University Shooting

  As I mentioned, Mr. President, today marks the 10th anniversary of 
one of the most devastating shootings ever to occur on a college campus 
in America. On February 14, 2008, a gunman with a history of mental 
instability walked into a lecture hall at Northern Illinois University 
in DeKalb and opened fire. His bullets killed five students and wounded 
17 more. It was a horrific mass murder, and it shocked the entire 
Nation.
  The five young Illinoisans we lost that day all had bright futures 
ahead of them: Gayle Dubowski, 20 years old, from Carol Stream, who 
worked as a camp counselor and was a talented singer in her church 
choir; Catalina Garcia, of Cicero, 20 years old, a smiling, outgoing 
young woman who planned to be a teacher; Julianna Gehant, of Mendota, 
32 years old, who served our country in the U.S. Army and Army Reserve 
and who went to NIU to study to be a teacher; Ryanne Mace, of 
Carpentersville, a 19-year-old, who was funny and fun to be with and 
who aspired to work as a counselor; and Daniel Parmenter, 20 years old, 
from Westchester, a rugby player, who lost his life because he shielded 
his girlfriend from the shooter.
  It is heartbreaking to think what these five young people could have 
accomplished in the 10 years since that horrible day. We mourn their 
loss and, again, our hearts go out to their families.
  We remember and honor the wounded who still bear the scars of that 
terrible day. We renew our thanks over and over to the law enforcement 
officers and first responders who headed toward the sound of gunfire 
that day and who treated the victims as they were wounded.
  We commend the many members of the NIU community who stepped up in 
the days that followed, working to persevere through this tragedy, with 
heavy hearts but unbroken spirits and moving ``forward, together 
forward,'' in the words of that Northern Illinois University Huskie 
fight song.
  It is devastating to think that in this great country, students and 
educators could be gunned down in our schools. But it happens so often 
that I am afraid a numbness is setting in.
  Just in the last few months, we have had fatal shootings of students 
at Aztec High School in Aztec, NM; Wake Forest University in North 
Carolina; Marshall County High School in Benton, KY; and then, today, 
in Florida.
  Other tragedies have been narrowly averted because of well-trained 
staff. At Mattoon High School in Illinois, a heroic teacher named 
Angela McQueen stopped a student gunman from causing a massacre there 
last September.
  The threat of shootings in our schools is ever present. According to 
a tally kept by the group Everytown, there have been at least 18 
incidents so far this year where a gun has been fired on a school or 
college campus.
  Schools and colleges are doing the best they can to prepare and 
protect their students. I salute the educators and administrators who 
are working hard, but is Congress doing all that it can to keep our 
Nation's students safe from gun violence? Not even close.
  Of course, there is no single reform that could stop every shooting 
in America, but we know there are big gaps in our laws that make it 
easy for criminals, abusers, and mentally unstable people to get their 
hands on guns that hurt innocent people. Congress has done nothing--
nothing--in recent years to close those gaps and make America safer.
  Congress hasn't even closed the gun show loophole that the 1999 
Columbine, CO, killers used to buy their weapons, and we did nothing in 
response to the murder of 20 first graders and 6 educators at Sandy 
Hook Elementary School in Connecticut.
  In fact, the only vote taken by the Senate on gun laws in this 
current

[[Page S959]]

Congress was to weaken gun law safety provisions on the books. That was 
a vote that Senate Republicans brought up last year that prevented the 
Social Security Administration from alerting the FBI's gun background 
check system about people with mental illness.
  It is likely that before this year is over, the Republican majority 
will call up more bills to weaken gun safety laws. That is the wrong 
response to the epidemic of gun violence in America.
  I am not going to give up on trying to close the loopholes in our gun 
laws. I am going to keep fighting for universal background checks, 
tougher straw purchasing laws, and better laws to prevent gun theft. I 
am not going to give up because of people like Patrick Korellis, who 
was shot in the head 10 years ago at the tragedy at Northern Illinois 
University. Luckily, Patrick survived, and since that day, he has been 
a leader in Illinois, fighting for commonsense gun reform. I have come 
to know and admire him for his efforts.
  No one should have to go through what Patrick went through and so 
many others went through on that day in DeKalb, IL, 10 years ago. We 
owe it to Patrick, to the other NIU victims and families and community 
members, and to the hundreds of thousands more across America who have 
been killed and wounded by guns this past decade to keep trying to 
reduce the toll of gun violence.
  Maybe we can't stop every shooting, but if we do our best to keep 
guns out of dangerous hands, we will save lives. I intend to keep doing 
my best to achieve that goal.
  I yield the floor.
  I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The senior assistant legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. SCHUMER. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order 
for the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.


                    Amendment No. 1958, as Modified

  Mr. SCHUMER. Mr. President, I modify my amendment No. 1958 with the 
text at the desk.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator has that right.
  The amendment, as modified, is as follows:

       In lieu of the matter proposed to be stricken, insert the 
     following:

     SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

       This Act may be cited as the ``Immigration Security and 
     Opportunity Act''.

     SEC. 2. CANCELLATION OF REMOVAL AND ADJUSTMENT OF STATUS FOR 
                   CERTAIN LONG-TERM RESIDENTS WHO ENTERED THE 
                   UNITED STATES AS CHILDREN.

       (a) In General.--Chapter 4 of title II of the Immigration 
     and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1221 et seq.) is amended by 
     adding at the end the following:

     ``SEC. 244A. CANCELLATION OF REMOVAL FOR CERTAIN LONG-TERM 
                   RESIDENTS WHO ENTERED THE UNITED STATES AS 
                   CHILDREN.

       ``(a) Definitions.--In this section:
       ``(1) Applicable federal tax liability.--The term 
     `applicable Federal tax liability' means liability for 
     Federal taxes imposed under the Internal Revenue Code of 
     1986, including any penalties and interest on Federal taxes 
     imposed under that Code.
       ``(2) Armed forces.--The term `Armed Forces' has the 
     meaning given the term `armed forces' in section 101 of title 
     10, United States Code.
       ``(3) DACA.--The term `DACA' means the deferred action for 
     childhood arrivals policy described in the memorandum issued 
     by the Secretary dated June 15, 2012 (rescinded on September 
     5, 2017).
       ``(4) DACA recipient.--The term `DACA recipient' means an 
     alien who was granted and remained in deferred action status 
     under DACA.
       ``(5) Disability.--The term `disability' has the meaning 
     given the term in section 3(1) of the Americans with 
     Disabilities Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 12102(1)).
       ``(6) Early childhood education program.--The term `early 
     childhood education program' has the meaning given the term 
     in section 103 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 
     1003).
       ``(7) Elementary school.--The term `elementary school' has 
     the meaning given the term in section 8101 of the Elementary 
     and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7801).
       ``(8) Felony.--
       ``(A) In general.--The term `felony' means a Federal, 
     State, or local criminal offense punishable by imprisonment 
     for a term that exceeds 1 year.
       ``(B) Exclusion.--The term `felony' does not include a 
     State or local criminal offense for which an essential 
     element is the immigration status of an alien.
       ``(9) High school.--The term `high school' has the meaning 
     given the term in section 8101 of the Elementary and 
     Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7801).
       ``(10) Institution of higher education.--
       ``(A) In general.--Except as provided in subparagraph (B), 
     the term `institution of higher education' has the meaning 
     given the term in section 102 of the Higher Education Act of 
     1965 (20 U.S.C. 1002).
       ``(B) Exclusion.--The term `institution of higher 
     education' does not include an institution of higher 
     education outside the United States.
       ``(11) Misdemeanor.--
       ``(A) In general.--The term `misdemeanor' means a Federal, 
     State, or local criminal offense for which--
       ``(i) the maximum term of imprisonment is--

       ``(I) greater than 5 days; and
       ``(II) not greater than 1 year; and

       ``(ii) the individual was sentenced to time in custody of 
     90 days or less.
       ``(B) Exclusion.--The term `misdemeanor' does not include a 
     State or local offense for which an essential element is--
       ``(i) the immigration status of the alien;
       ``(ii) a significant misdemeanor; or
       ``(iii) a minor traffic offense.
       ``(12) Permanent resident status on a conditional basis.--
     The term `permanent resident status on a conditional basis' 
     means status as an alien lawfully admitted for permanent 
     residence on a conditional basis under this section.
       ``(13) Poverty line.--The term `poverty line' has the 
     meaning given the term in section 673 of the Community 
     Services Block Grant Act (42 U.S.C. 9902).
       ``(14) Secondary school.--The term `secondary school' has 
     the meaning given the term in section 8101 of the Elementary 
     and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7801).
       ``(15) Secretary.--The term `Secretary' means the Secretary 
     of Homeland Security.
       ``(16) Significant misdemeanor.--
       ``(A) In general.--The term `significant misdemeanor' means 
     a Federal, State, or local criminal offense--
       ``(i) for which the maximum term of imprisonment is--

       ``(I) more than 5 days; and
       ``(II) not more than 1 year; and

       ``(ii)(I) that, regardless of the sentence imposed, is--

       ``(aa) a crime of domestic violence (as defined in section 
     237(a)(2)(E)(i)); or
       ``(bb) an offense of--

       ``(AA) sexual abuse or exploitation;
       ``(BB) burglary;
       ``(CC) unlawful possession or use of a firearm;
       ``(DD) drug distribution or trafficking; or
       ``(EE) driving under the influence, if the applicable State 
     law requires, as elements of the offense, the operation of a 
     motor vehicle and a finding of impairment or a blood alcohol 
     content equal to or greater than .08; or
       ``(II) that resulted in a sentence of time in custody of 
     more than 90 days.
       ``(B) Exclusion.--The term `significant misdemeanor' does 
     not include a State or local offense for which an essential 
     element is the immigration status of an alien.
       ``(17) Uniformed services.--The term `Uniformed Services' 
     has the meaning given the term `uniformed services' in 
     section 101(a) of title 10, United States Code.
       ``(b) In General.--Notwithstanding any other provision of 
     law, the Secretary shall cancel the removal of, and adjust to 
     the status of an alien lawfully admitted for permanent 
     residence on a conditional basis, an alien who is 
     inadmissible to, or deportable from, the United States if--
       ``(1) the alien is a DACA recipient; or
       ``(2)(A) the alien has been continuously physically present 
     in the United States since June 15, 2012;
       ``(B) the alien was younger than 18 years of age on the 
     date on which the alien initially entered the United States;
       ``(C) subject to subsections (c) and (d), the alien--
       ``(i) is not inadmissible under paragraph (2), (3), (6)(E), 
     (6)(G), (8), (10)(A), (10)(C), or (10)(D) of section 212(a);
       ``(ii) has not ordered, incited, assisted, or otherwise 
     participated in the persecution of any person on account of 
     race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular 
     social group, or political opinion; and
       ``(iii) has not been convicted of--
       ``(I) a felony;
       ``(II) a significant misdemeanor; or
       ``(III) 3 or more misdemeanors--

       ``(aa) not occurring on the same date; and
       ``(bb) not arising out of the same act, omission, or scheme 
     of misconduct;

       ``(D) the alien--
       ``(i) has been admitted to an institution of higher 
     education;
       ``(ii)(I) has earned a high school diploma or a 
     commensurate alternative award from a public or private high 
     school; or
       ``(II) has obtained--
       ``(aa) a general education development certificate 
     recognized under State law; or
       ``(bb) a high school equivalency diploma in the United 
     States;
       ``(iii) is enrolled in--
       ``(I) secondary school; or
       ``(II) an education program assisting student in--

       ``(aa) obtaining--

       ``(AA) a regular high school diploma; or
       ``(BB) the recognized equivalent of a regular high school 
     diploma; or

       ``(bb) passing--

       ``(AA) a general educational development exam;

[[Page S960]]

       ``(BB) a high school equivalence diploma examination; or
       ``(CC) any other similar State-authorized exam; or
       ``(iv)(I) has served, is serving, or has enlisted in the 
     Armed Forces; or
       ``(II) in the case of an alien who has been discharged from 
     the Armed Forces, has received an honorable discharge;
       ``(E)(i) the alien has paid any applicable Federal tax 
     liability incurred by the alien during the entire period for 
     which the alien was authorized to work in the United States; 
     or
       ``(ii) the alien has entered into an agreement to pay, 
     through a payment installment plan approved by the 
     Commissioner of Internal Revenue, any applicable Federal tax 
     liability incurred by the alien during the entire period for 
     which the alien was authorized to work in the United States; 
     and
       ``(F) the alien was under the age of 38 years on June 15, 
     2012.
       ``(c) Waiver.--
       ``(1) In general.--With respect to any benefit under this 
     section, the Secretary may, on a case-by-case basis, waive a 
     ground of inadmissibility under paragraph (2), (6)(E), 
     (6)(G), or (10)(D) of section 212(a)--
       ``(A) for humanitarian purposes; or
       ``(B) if the waiver is otherwise in the public interest.
       ``(2) Quarterly report.--Not later than 180 days after the 
     date of enactment of this section, and quarterly thereafter, 
     the Secretary shall submit to Congress a report that 
     identifies, for the preceding quarter--
       ``(A) the number of waivers requested by aliens under 
     paragraph (1);
       ``(B) the number of waiver requests granted by the 
     Secretary under that paragraph; and
       ``(C) the number of waiver requests denied by the Secretary 
     under that paragraph.
       ``(d) Treatment of Expunged Convictions.--
       ``(1) In general.--An expunged conviction shall not 
     automatically be treated as a conviction referred to in 
     subsection (b)(2)(C)(iii), (o)(3)(A)(iii), or 
     (p)(1)(A)(i)(III).
       ``(2) Case-by-case evaluation.--The Secretary shall 
     evaluate an expunged conviction on a case-by-case basis 
     according to the nature and severity of the offense 
     underlying the expunged conviction, based on the record of 
     conviction, to determine whether, under the particular 
     circumstances, the alien is eligible for cancellation of 
     removal, adjustment to permanent resident status on a 
     conditional basis, or other adjustment of status.
       ``(e) DACA Recipients.--With respect to a DACA recipient, 
     the Secretary shall cancel the removal of the DACA recipient 
     and adjust the status of the DACA recipient to the status of 
     an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence on a 
     conditional basis unless, since the date on which the DACA 
     recipient was granted deferred action status under DACA, the 
     DACA recipient has engaged in conduct that would render an 
     alien ineligible for deferred action status under DACA.
       ``(f) Application Fee.--
       ``(1) In general.--The Secretary may require an alien 
     applying for permanent resident status on a conditional basis 
     to pay a reasonable fee that is commensurate with the cost of 
     processing the application.
       ``(2) Exemption.--An applicant may be exempted from paying 
     the fee required under paragraph (1) only if the alien--
       ``(A)(i) is younger than 18 years of age;
       ``(ii) received total income, during the 1-year period 
     immediately preceding the date on which the alien files an 
     application under this section, that is less than 150 percent 
     of the poverty line; and
       ``(iii) is in foster care or otherwise lacking any parental 
     or other familial support;
       ``(B) is younger than 18 years of age and is homeless;
       ``(C)(i) cannot care for himself or herself because of a 
     serious, chronic disability; and
       ``(ii) received total income, during the 1-year period 
     immediately preceding the date on which the alien files an 
     application under this section, that is less than 150 percent 
     of the poverty line; or
       ``(D)(i) during the 1-year period immediately preceding the 
     date on which the alien files an application under this 
     section, accumulated $10,000 or more in debt as a result of 
     unreimbursed medical expenses incurred by the alien or an 
     immediate family member of the alien; and
       ``(ii) received total income, during the 1-year period 
     immediately preceding the date on which the alien files an 
     application under this section, that is less than 150 percent 
     of the poverty line.
       ``(g) Submission of Biometric and Biographic Data.--
       ``(1) In general.--The Secretary may not grant an alien 
     permanent resident status on a conditional basis under this 
     section unless the alien submits biometric and biographic 
     data, in accordance with procedures established by the 
     Secretary.
       ``(2) Alternative procedure.--The Secretary shall provide 
     an alternative procedure for any alien who is unable to 
     provide the biometric or biographic data referred to in 
     paragraph (1) due to of a physical impairment.
       ``(h) Background Checks.--
       ``(1) Requirement for background checks.--The Secretary 
     shall use biometric, biographic, and other data that the 
     Secretary determines appropriate--
       ``(A) to conduct security and law enforcement background 
     checks of an alien seeking permanent resident status on a 
     conditional basis; and
       ``(B) to determine whether there is any criminal, national 
     security, or other factor that would render the alien 
     ineligible for permanent resident status on a conditional 
     basis.
       ``(2) Completion of background checks.--The security and 
     law enforcement background checks of an alien required under 
     paragraph (1) shall be completed, to the satisfaction of the 
     Secretary, before the date on which the Secretary grants the 
     alien permanent resident status on a conditional basis.
       ``(3) Criminal record requests.--With respect to an alien 
     seeking permanent resident status on a conditional basis, the 
     Secretary, in cooperation with the Secretary of State, shall 
     seek to obtain from INTERPOL, EUROPOL, or any other 
     international or national law enforcement agency of the 
     country of nationality, country of citizenship, or country of 
     last habitual residence of the alien information about any 
     criminal activity--
       ``(A) in which the alien engaged in the country of 
     nationality, country of citizenship, or country of last 
     habitual residence of the alien; or
       ``(B) for which the alien was convicted in the country of 
     nationality, country of citizenship, or country of last 
     habitual residence of the alien.
       ``(i) Medical Examination.--
       ``(1) Requirement.--An alien applying for permanent 
     resident status on a conditional basis shall undergo a 
     medical examination.
       ``(2) Policies and procedures.--The Secretary, with the 
     concurrence of the Secretary of Health and Human Services, 
     shall prescribe policies and procedures for the nature and 
     timing of the examination required under paragraph (1).
       ``(j) Military Selective Service.--An alien applying for 
     permanent resident status on a conditional basis under this 
     section shall establish that the alien has registered under 
     the Military Selective Service Act (50 U.S.C. 3801 et seq.), 
     if the alien is subject to registration under that Act.
       ``(k) Determination of Continuous Presence.--
       ``(1) Termination of continuous period.--Any period of 
     continuous physical presence in the United States of an alien 
     who applies for permanent resident status on a conditional 
     basis under this section shall not terminate on the date on 
     which the alien is served a notice to appear under section 
     239(a).
       ``(2) Treatment of certain breaks in presence.--
       ``(A) In general.--Except as provided in subparagraphs (B) 
     and (C), an alien shall be considered to have failed to 
     maintain continuous physical presence in the United States if 
     the alien has departed from the United States for any period 
     greater than 90 days or for any periods, in the aggregate, 
     greater than 180 days.
       ``(B) Extensions for extenuating circumstances.--The 
     Secretary may extend the time periods described in 
     subparagraph (A) for an alien who demonstrates that the 
     failure to timely return to the United States was due to 
     extenuating circumstances beyond the control of the alien, 
     including the serious illness of the alien, or death or 
     serious illness of a parent, grandparent, sibling, or child 
     of the alien.
       ``(C) Travel authorized by the secretary.--Any period of 
     travel outside of the United States by an alien that was 
     authorized by the Secretary may not be counted toward any 
     period of departure from the United States under subparagraph 
     (A).
       ``(l) Limitation on Removal of Certain Aliens.--
       ``(1) In general.--The Secretary or the Attorney General 
     may not remove an alien who appears prima facie eligible for 
     relief under this section.
       ``(2) Aliens subject to removal.--With respect to an alien 
     who is in removal proceedings, the subject of a final removal 
     order, or the subject of a voluntary departure order, the 
     Attorney General shall provide the alien with a reasonable 
     opportunity to apply for relief under this section.
       ``(m) Certain Aliens Enrolled in Elementary or Secondary 
     School.--
       ``(1) Stay of removal.--The Attorney General shall stay the 
     removal proceedings of an alien who--
       ``(A) meets all the requirements described in subparagraphs 
     (A) through (C) of subsection (b)(2), subject to subsections 
     (c) and (d);
       ``(B) is at least 5 years of age; and
       ``(C) is enrolled in an elementary school, a secondary 
     school, or an early childhood education program.
       ``(2) Commencement of removal proceedings.--The Secretary 
     may not commence removal proceedings for an alien described 
     in paragraph (1).
       ``(3) Employment.--An alien whose removal is stayed 
     pursuant to paragraph (1) or who may not be placed in removal 
     proceedings pursuant to paragraph (2) shall, on application 
     to the Secretary, be granted an employment authorization 
     document.
       ``(4) Lift of stay.--The Secretary or Attorney General may 
     not lift the stay granted to an alien under paragraph (1) 
     unless the alien ceases to meet the requirements under that 
     paragraph.
       ``(n) Exemption From Numerical Limitations.--Nothing in 
     this section or in any other law applies a numerical 
     limitation on the number of aliens who may be granted 
     permanent resident status on a conditional basis.

[[Page S961]]

       ``(o) Terms of Permanent Resident Status on a Conditional 
     Basis.--
       ``(1) Period of status.--
       ``(A) In general.--Permanent resident status on a 
     conditional basis is--
       ``(i) subject to subparagraph (B), valid for a period of 7 
     years; and
       ``(ii) subject to termination under paragraph (3).
       ``(B) Extension authorized.--The Secretary may extend the 
     period described in subparagraph (A)(i).
       ``(2) Notice of requirements.--At the time an alien obtains 
     permanent resident status on a conditional basis, the 
     Secretary shall provide notice to the alien regarding the 
     provisions of this section and the requirements to have the 
     conditional basis of that status removed.
       ``(3) Termination of status.--The Secretary may terminate 
     the permanent resident status on a conditional basis of an 
     alien only if the Secretary--
       ``(A) subject to subsections (c) and (d), determines that 
     the alien--
       ``(i) is inadmissible under paragraph (2), (3), (6)(E), 
     (6)(G), (8), (10)(A), (10)(C), or (10)(D) of section 212(a);
       ``(ii) has ordered, incited, assisted, or otherwise 
     participated in the persecution of any person on account of 
     race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular 
     social group, or political opinion; or
       ``(iii) has been convicted of--

       ``(I) a felony;
       ``(II) a significant misdemeanor; or
       ``(III) 3 or more misdemeanors--

       ``(aa) not occurring on the same date; and
       ``(bb) not arising out of the same act, omission, or scheme 
     of misconduct; and
       ``(B) prior to the termination, provides the alien--
       ``(i) notice of the proposed termination; and
       ``(ii) the opportunity for a hearing to provide evidence 
     that the alien meets the requirements or otherwise contest 
     the termination.
       ``(4) Return to previous immigration status.--The 
     immigration status of an alien whose permanent resident 
     status on a conditional basis expires under paragraph 
     (1)(A)(i) or is terminated under paragraph (3) or whose 
     application for permanent resident status on a conditional 
     basis is denied shall return to the immigration status of the 
     alien on the day before the date on which the alien received 
     permanent resident status on a conditional basis or applied 
     for permanent resident status on a conditional basis, as 
     appropriate.
       ``(p) Removal of Conditional Basis of Permanent Resident 
     Status.--
       ``(1) Eligibility for removal of conditional basis.--
       ``(A) In general.--Subject to subparagraph (B), the 
     Secretary shall remove the conditional basis of the permanent 
     resident status of an alien granted under this section and 
     grant the alien status as an alien lawfully admitted for 
     permanent residence if the alien--
       ``(i) subject to subsections (c) and (d)--

       ``(I) is not inadmissible under paragraph (2), (3), (6)(E), 
     (6)(G), (8), (10)(A), (10)(C), or (10)(D) of section 212(a);
       ``(II) has not ordered, incited, assisted, or otherwise 
     participated in the persecution of any person on account of 
     race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular 
     social group, or political opinion; and
       ``(III) has not been convicted of--

       ``(aa) a felony;
       ``(bb) a significant misdemeanor; or
       ``(cc) 3 or more misdemeanors--

       ``(AA) not occurring on the same date; and
       ``(BB) not arising out of the same act, omission, or scheme 
     of misconduct;

       ``(ii) has not abandoned the residence of the alien in the 
     United States;
       ``(iii)(I) has acquired a degree from an institution of 
     higher education or has completed at least 2 years, in good 
     standing, in a program for a bachelor's degree or higher 
     degree in the United States;
       ``(II)(aa) has served in the Uniformed Services for at 
     least 2 years; or
       ``(bb) in the case of an alien who has been discharged from 
     the Uniformed Services, has received an honorable discharge; 
     or
       ``(III) has been employed for periods totaling at least 3 
     years and at least 75 percent of the time that the alien has 
     had a valid employment authorization, except that any period 
     during which the alien is not employed while having a valid 
     employment authorization and is enrolled in an institution of 
     higher education, a secondary school, or an education program 
     described in subsection (b)(2)(D)(iii), shall not count 
     toward the time requirements under this clause;
       ``(iv)(I) has paid any applicable Federal tax liability 
     incurred by the alien during the entire period for which the 
     alien has been in permanent resident status on a conditional 
     basis; or
       ``(II) has entered into an agreement to pay the applicable 
     Federal tax liability through a payment installment plan 
     approved by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue; and
       ``(v) has demonstrated good moral character during the 
     entire period for which the alien has been in permanent 
     resident status on a conditional basis.
       ``(B) Citizenship requirement.--The conditional basis of 
     the permanent resident status granted to an alien under this 
     section may not be removed unless the alien demonstrates that 
     the alien satisfies the requirements of section 312(a).
       ``(C) Application fee.--
       ``(i) In general.--The Secretary may require an alien 
     applying for lawful permanent resident status under this 
     subsection to pay a reasonable fee that is commensurate with 
     the cost of processing the application.
       ``(ii) Exemption.--An applicant may be exempted from paying 
     the fee required under clause (i) only if the alien--

       ``(I)(aa) is younger than 18 years of age;
       ``(bb) received total income, during the 1-year period 
     immediately preceding the date on which the alien files an 
     application under this section, that is less than 150 percent 
     of the poverty line; and
       ``(cc) is in foster care or otherwise lacking any parental 
     or other familial support;
       ``(II) is younger than 18 years of age and is homeless;
       ``(III)(aa) cannot care for himself or herself because of a 
     serious, chronic disability; and
       ``(bb) received total income, during the 1-year period 
     immediately preceding the date on which the alien files an 
     application under this section, that is less than 150 percent 
     of the poverty line; or
       ``(IV)(aa) during the 1-year period immediately preceding 
     the date on which the alien files an application under this 
     section, the alien accumulated $10,000 or more in debt as a 
     result of unreimbursed medical expenses incurred by the alien 
     or an immediate family member of the alien; and
       ``(bb) received total income, during the 1-year period 
     immediately preceding the date on which the alien files an 
     application under this section, that is less than 150 percent 
     of the poverty line.

       ``(D) Submission of biometric and biographic data.--
       ``(i) In general.--The Secretary may not remove the 
     conditional basis of the permanent resident status of an 
     alien unless the alien submits biometric and biographic data, 
     in accordance with procedures established by the Secretary.
       ``(ii) Alternative procedure.--The Secretary shall provide 
     an alternative procedure for any applicant who is unable to 
     provide the biometric or biographic data referred to in 
     clause (i) due to physical impairment.
       ``(E) Background checks.--
       ``(i) Requirement for background checks.--The Secretary 
     shall use biometric, biographic, and other data that the 
     Secretary determines to be appropriate--

       ``(I) to conduct security and law enforcement background 
     checks of an alien applying for removal of the conditional 
     basis of the permanent resident status of the alien; and
       ``(II) to determine whether there is any criminal, national 
     security, or other factor that would render the alien 
     ineligible for removal of the conditional basis of the 
     permanent resident status of the alien.

       ``(ii) Completion of background checks.--The security and 
     law enforcement background checks of an alien required under 
     clause (i) shall be completed, to the satisfaction of the 
     Secretary, before the date on which the Secretary removes the 
     conditional basis of the permanent resident status of the 
     alien.
       ``(2) Naturalization.--
       ``(A) In general.--For purposes of title III, an alien 
     granted permanent resident status on a conditional basis 
     shall be considered to have been admitted to the United 
     States, and to be present in the United States, as an alien 
     lawfully admitted for permanent residence.
       ``(B) Limitations on application for naturalization.--
       ``(i) In general.--An alien shall not be naturalized--

       ``(I) on any date on which the alien is in permanent 
     resident status on a conditional basis; or
       ``(II) subject to clause (iii), before the date that is 12 
     years after the date on which the alien was granted permanent 
     resident status on a conditional basis.

       ``(ii) Advanced filing date.--Subject to clause (iii), with 
     respect to an alien granted permanent resident status on a 
     conditional basis, the alien may file an application for 
     naturalization not more than 90 days before the date that is 
     12 years after the date on which the alien was granted 
     permanent resident status on a conditional basis.
       ``(iii) Reduction in period.--

       ``(I) In general.--Subject to subclause (II), the 12-year 
     period referred to in clause (i)(II) and clause (ii) may be 
     reduced by the number of days on which the alien was a DACA 
     recipient, if applicable.
       ``(II) Limitation.--Notwithstanding subclause (I), the 
     reduction in the 12-year period referred to in clause (i)(II) 
     and clause (ii) shall be not more than 2 years.

       ``(3) Limitation on certain parents.--An alien shall not be 
     eligible to adjust status to that of an alien lawfully 
     admitted for permanent residence based on a petition filed by 
     a child or a son or daughter of the alien if--
       ``(A) the child or son or daughter was granted permanent 
     resident status on a conditional basis; and
       ``(B) the alien knowingly assisted the child or son or 
     daughter to enter the United States unlawfully.
       ``(q) Documentation Requirements.--
       ``(1) Documents establishing identity.--An alien's 
     application for permanent resident status on a conditional 
     basis may include, as proof of identity--
       ``(A) a passport or national identity document from the 
     alien's country of origin that includes the alien's name and 
     the alien's photograph or fingerprint;
       ``(B) the alien's birth certificate and an identity card 
     that includes the alien's name and photograph;

[[Page S962]]

       ``(C) a school identification card that includes the 
     alien's name and photograph, and school records showing the 
     alien's name and that the alien is or was enrolled at the 
     school;
       ``(D) a Uniformed Services identification card issued by 
     the Department of Defense;
       ``(E) any immigration or other document issued by the 
     United States Government bearing the alien's name and 
     photograph; or
       ``(F) a State-issued identification card bearing the 
     alien's name and photograph.
       ``(2) Documents establishing continuous physical presence 
     in the united states.--To establish that an alien has been 
     continuously physically present in the United States, as 
     required under subsection (b)(2)(A), or to establish that an 
     alien has not abandoned residence in the United States, as 
     required under subsection (p)(1)(A)(ii), the alien may submit 
     documents to the Secretary, including--
       ``(A) employment records that include the employer's name 
     and contact information;
       ``(B) records from any educational institution the alien 
     has attended in the United States;
       ``(C) records of service from the Uniformed Services;
       ``(D) official records from a religious entity confirming 
     the alien's participation in a religious ceremony;
       ``(E) passport entries;
       ``(F) a birth certificate for a child of the alien who was 
     born in the United States;
       ``(G) automobile license receipts or registration;
       ``(H) deeds, mortgages, or rental agreement contracts;
       ``(I) tax receipts;
       ``(J) insurance policies;
       ``(K) remittance records;
       ``(L) rent receipts or utility bills bearing the alien's 
     name or the name of an immediate family member of the alien, 
     and the alien's address;
       ``(M) copies of money order receipts for money sent in or 
     out of the United States;
       ``(N) dated bank transactions; or
       ``(O) 2 or more sworn affidavits from individuals who are 
     not related to the alien who have direct knowledge of the 
     alien's continuous physical presence in the United States, 
     that contain--
       ``(i) the name, address, and telephone number of the 
     affiant; and
       ``(ii) the nature and duration of the relationship between 
     the affiant and the alien.
       ``(3) Documents establishing initial entry into the united 
     states.--To establish under subsection (b)(2)(B) that an 
     alien was younger than 18 years of age on the date on which 
     the alien initially entered the United States, an alien may 
     submit documents to the Secretary, including--
       ``(A) an admission stamp on the alien's passport;
       ``(B) records from any educational institution the alien 
     has attended in the United States;
       ``(C) any document from the Department of Justice or the 
     Department of Homeland Security stating the alien's date of 
     entry into the United States;
       ``(D) hospital or medical records showing medical treatment 
     or hospitalization, the name of the medical facility or 
     physician, and the date of the treatment or hospitalization;
       ``(E) rent receipts or utility bills bearing the alien's 
     name or the name of an immediate family member of the alien, 
     and the alien's address;
       ``(F) employment records that include the employer's name 
     and contact information;
       ``(G) official records from a religious entity confirming 
     the alien's participation in a religious ceremony;
       ``(H) a birth certificate for a child of the alien who was 
     born in the United States;
       ``(I) automobile license receipts or registration;
       ``(J) deeds, mortgages, or rental agreement contracts;
       ``(K) tax receipts;
       ``(L) travel records;
       ``(M) copies of money order receipts sent in or out of the 
     country;
       ``(N) dated bank transactions;
       ``(O) remittance records; or
       ``(P) insurance policies.
       ``(4) Documents establishing admission to an institution of 
     higher education.--To establish that an alien has been 
     admitted to an institution of higher education, the alien 
     shall submit to the Secretary a document from the institution 
     of higher education certifying that the alien--
       ``(A) has been admitted to the institution; or
       ``(B) is currently enrolled in the institution as a 
     student.
       ``(5) Documents establishing receipt of a degree from an 
     institution of higher education.--To establish that an alien 
     has acquired a degree from an institution of higher education 
     in the United States, the alien shall submit to the Secretary 
     a diploma or other document from the institution stating that 
     the alien has received such a degree.
       ``(6) Documents establishing receipt of high school 
     diploma, general educational development certificate, or a 
     recognized equivalent.--To establish that an alien has earned 
     a high school diploma or a commensurate alternative award 
     from a public or private high school, or has obtained a 
     general educational development certificate recognized under 
     State law or a high school equivalency diploma in the United 
     States, the alien shall submit to the Secretary--
       ``(A) a high school diploma, certificate of completion, or 
     other alternate award;
       ``(B) a high school equivalency diploma or certificate 
     recognized under State law; or
       ``(C) evidence that the alien passed a State-authorized 
     exam, including the general educational development exam, in 
     the United States.
       ``(7) Documents establishing enrollment in an educational 
     program.--To establish that an alien is enrolled in any 
     school or education program described in subsection 
     (b)(2)(D)(iii), (m)(1)(C), or (p)(1)(A)(iii)(III), the alien 
     shall submit school records from the United States school 
     that the alien is currently attending that include--
       ``(A) the name of the school; and
       ``(B) the alien's name, periods of attendance, and current 
     grade or educational level.
       ``(8) Documents establishing exemption from application 
     fees.--To establish that an alien is exempt from an 
     application fee under subsection (f)(2) or (p)(1)(C)(ii), the 
     alien shall submit to the Secretary the following relevant 
     documents:
       ``(A) Documents to establish age.--To establish that an 
     alien meets an age requirement, the alien shall provide proof 
     of identity, as described in paragraph (1), that establishes 
     that the alien is younger than 18 years of age.
       ``(B) Documents to establish income.--To establish the 
     alien's income, the alien shall provide--
       ``(i) employment records that have been maintained by the 
     Social Security Administration, the Internal Revenue Service, 
     or any other Federal, State, or local government agency;
       ``(ii) bank records; or
       ``(iii) at least 2 sworn affidavits from individuals who 
     are not related to the alien and who have direct knowledge of 
     the alien's work and income that contain--

       ``(I) the name, address, and telephone number of the 
     affiant; and
       ``(II) the nature and duration of the relationship between 
     the affiant and the alien.

       ``(C) Documents to establish foster care, lack of familial 
     support, homelessness, or serious, chronic disability.--To 
     establish that the alien was in foster care, lacks parental 
     or familial support, is homeless, or has a serious, chronic 
     disability, the alien shall provide at least 2 sworn 
     affidavits from individuals who are not related to the alien 
     and who have direct knowledge of the circumstances that 
     contain--
       ``(i) a statement that the alien is in foster care, 
     otherwise lacks any parental or other familiar support, is 
     homeless, or has a serious, chronic disability, as 
     appropriate;
       ``(ii) the name, address, and telephone number of the 
     affiant; and
       ``(iii) the nature and duration of the relationship between 
     the affiant and the alien.
       ``(D) Documents to establish unpaid medical expense.--To 
     establish that the alien has debt as a result of unreimbursed 
     medical expenses, the alien shall provide receipts or other 
     documentation from a medical provider that--
       ``(i) bear the provider's name and address;
       ``(ii) bear the name of the individual receiving treatment; 
     and
       ``(iii) document that the alien has accumulated $10,000 or 
     more in debt in the past 12 months as a result of 
     unreimbursed medical expenses incurred by the alien or an 
     immediate family member of the alien.
       ``(9) Documents establishing service in the uniformed 
     services.--To establish that an alien has served in the 
     Uniformed Services for at least 2 years and, if discharged, 
     received an honorable discharge, the alien shall submit to 
     the Secretary--
       ``(A) a Department of Defense form DD-214;
       ``(B) a National Guard Report of Separation and Record of 
     Service form 22;
       ``(C) personnel records for such service from the 
     appropriate Uniformed Service; or
       ``(D) health records from the appropriate Uniformed 
     Service.
       ``(10) Documents establishing employment.--
       ``(A) In general.--An alien may satisfy the employment 
     requirement under section (p)(1)(A)(iii)(III) by submitting 
     records that--
       ``(i) establish compliance with such employment 
     requirement; and
       ``(ii) have been maintained by the Social Security 
     Administration, the Internal Revenue Service, or any other 
     Federal, State, or local government agency.
       ``(B) Other documents.--An alien who is unable to submit 
     the records described in subparagraph (A) may satisfy the 
     employment requirement by submitting at least 2 types of 
     reliable documents that provide evidence of employment, 
     including--
       ``(i) bank records;
       ``(ii) business records;
       ``(iii) employer records;
       ``(iv) records of a labor union, day labor center, or 
     organization that assists workers in employment;
       ``(v) sworn affidavits from individuals who are not related 
     to the alien and who have direct knowledge of the alien's 
     work, that contain--

       ``(I) the name, address, and telephone number of the 
     affiant; and
       ``(II) the nature and duration of the relationship between 
     the affiant and the alien; and

       ``(vi) remittance records.
       ``(11) Authority to prohibit use of certain documents.--If 
     the Secretary determines, after publication in the Federal 
     Register and an opportunity for public comment, that any 
     document or class of documents

[[Page S963]]

     does not reliably establish identity or that permanent 
     resident status on a conditional basis is being obtained 
     fraudulently to an unacceptable degree, the Secretary may 
     prohibit or restrict the use of such document or class of 
     documents.
       ``(r) Rulemaking.--
       ``(1) Initial publication.--
       ``(A) In general.--Not later than 90 days after the date of 
     enactment of this section, the Secretary shall publish in the 
     Federal Register regulations implementing this section.
       ``(B) Affirmative application.--The regulations published 
     under subparagraph (A) shall allow any eligible individual to 
     immediately apply affirmatively for the relief available 
     under subsection (b) without being placed in removal 
     proceedings.
       ``(2) Interim regulations.--Notwithstanding section 553 of 
     title 5, United States Code, the regulations published 
     pursuant to paragraph (1)(A) shall be effective, on an 
     interim basis, immediately on publication in the Federal 
     Register, but may be subject to change and revision after 
     public notice and opportunity for a period of public comment.
       ``(3) Final regulations.--Not later than 180 days after the 
     date on which interim regulations are published under this 
     subsection, the Secretary shall publish final regulations 
     implementing this section.
       ``(4) Paperwork reduction act.--The requirements under 
     chapter 35 of title 44, United States Code, (commonly known 
     as the `Paperwork Reduction Act') shall not apply to any 
     action to implement this subsection.
       ``(s) Confidentiality of Information.--
       ``(1) In general.--The Secretary may not disclose or use 
     for the purpose of immigration enforcement any information 
     provided in--
       ``(A) an application filed under this section; or
       ``(B) a request for deferred action status under DACA.
       ``(2) Referrals prohibited.--The Secretary may not refer to 
     U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, U.S. Customs and 
     Border Protection, or any designee of U.S. Immigration and 
     Customs Enforcement or U.S. Customs and Border Protection any 
     individual who--
       ``(A) has been granted permanent resident status on a 
     conditional basis; or
       ``(B) was granted deferred action status under DACA.
       ``(3) Limited exception.--Notwithstanding paragraphs (1) 
     and (2), information provided in an application for permanent 
     resident status on a conditional basis or a request for 
     deferred action status under DACA may be shared with a 
     Federal security or law enforcement agency--
       ``(A) for assistance in the consideration of an application 
     for permanent resident status on a conditional basis;
       ``(B) to identify or prevent fraudulent claims;
       ``(C) for national security purposes; or
       ``(D) for the investigation or prosecution of any felony 
     not related to immigration status.
       ``(4) Penalty.--Any person who knowingly uses, publishes, 
     or permits information to be examined in violation of this 
     subsection shall be fined not more than $10,000.''.
       (b) Conforming Amendment.--The table of contents of the 
     Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101 note) is 
     amended by inserting after the item relating to section 244 
     the following:

``Sec. 244A. Cancellation of removal for certain long-term residents 
              who entered the United States as children.''.

     SEC. 3. REDUCTION OF FAMILY-SPONSORED IMMIGRANT VISAS.

       (a) Prohibition Against the Sponsor of Unmarried Children 
     Older Than 21 Years of Age by Lawful Permanent Residents.--
     Section 203(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 
     U.S.C. 1153(a)) is amended by striking paragraph (2) and 
     inserting the following:
       ``(2) Spouses and children of aliens lawfully admitted for 
     permanent residence.--
       ``(A) In general.--Qualified immigrants who are the spouse 
     or child of an alien lawfully admitted for permanent 
     residence shall be allocated visas in a number not to exceed 
     the sum of--
       ``(i) 114,200;
       ``(ii) the number (if any) by which such worldwide level 
     exceeds 226,000; and
       ``(iii) the number of visas not required for the class 
     described in paragraph (1).
       ``(B) Transition period.--
       ``(i) In general.--The Secretary of State shall not 
     allocate a visa based on a petition filed by an alien 
     lawfully admitted for permanent residence on behalf of an 
     unmarried son or daughter under subparagraph (B) (as in 
     effect on the day before the date of enactment of this Act) 
     after December 31, 2018.
       ``(ii) Savings clause.--The Secretary of State shall 
     allocate a visa to a principal or derivative beneficiary of 
     an approved petition filed by an alien lawfully admitted for 
     permanent residence on behalf of a spouse or an unmarried son 
     or daughter under subparagraph (B) (as in effect on the day 
     before the date of enactment of this Act) before January 1, 
     2019, in accordance with that subparagraph (as in effect on 
     the day before the date of enactment of this Act), if the 
     principal or derivative beneficiary is otherwise eligible for 
     the visa.
       ``(C) Retention of priority date.--In the case of an alien 
     child who is the principal or derivative beneficiary of a 
     petition filed under subparagraph (A) who turns 21 years old 
     before the date on which a visa becomes available, the alien 
     may retain the priority date assigned to the alien under that 
     subparagraph for a petition filed under this subsection.''.
       (b) Conforming Amendments.--The Immigration and Nationality 
     Act (8 U.S.C. 1101 et seq.) is amended--
       (1) in section 101(a)(15)(V) (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(V)), by 
     striking ``section 203(a)(2)(A)'' each place such term 
     appears and inserting ``section 203(a)(2)'';
       (2) in section 201(f)(2) (8 U.S.C. 1151(f)(2)), by striking 
     ``section 203(a)(2)(A)'' and inserting ``section 203(a)(2)'';
       (3) in section 202--
       (A) in subsection (a)(8 U.S.C. 1152(a))--
       (i) in paragraph (2), by striking ``(3), (4), and (5)'' and 
     inserting ``(3) and (4)''
       (ii) by striking paragraph (4); and
       (iii) by redesignating paragraph (5) as paragraph (4); and
       (B) in subsection (e), by striking ``, or as limiting the 
     number of visas that may be issued under section 203(a)(2)(A) 
     pursuant to subsection (a)(4)(A)'';
       (4) in section 203(h)--
       (A) in paragraph (3), by striking ``subsections (a)(2)(A) 
     and (d)'' and inserting ``subsection (d)''; and
       (B) by striking ``(a)(2)(A)'' each place such term appears 
     and inserting ``(a)(2)'';
       (5) in section 204--
       (A) in subsection (a)(1)(B)--
       (i) in clause (ii)--

       (I) in subclause (I), by striking ``if such a child has not 
     been classified under clause (iii) of section 203(a)(2)(A) 
     and''; and
       (II) in subclause (II)(cc), by striking ``section 
     203(a)(2)(A)'' and inserting ``section 203(a)(2)''; and

       (ii) in clause (iii), by striking ``section 203(a)(2)(A)'' 
     and inserting ``section 203(a)(2)''; and
       (B) in subsection (k)(1)--
       (i) by striking ``alien unmarried son or daughter's 
     classification as a family-sponsored immigrant under section 
     203(a)(2)(B)'' and inserting ``alien child's classification 
     as a family-sponsored immigrant under section 203(a)(2)'';
       (ii) by striking ``son or daughter'' and inserting 
     ``child''; and
       (iii) by striking ``unmarried son or daughter as a family-
     sponsored immigrant under section 203(a)(1)'' and inserting 
     ``child as an immediate relative under section 201(b)(2)''; 
     and
       (6) in section 214(q)(1)(B)(i), by striking ``(a)(2)(A)'' 
     each place such term appears and inserting ``(a)(2)''.
       (c) Effective Date.--The amendments made by this section 
     shall take effect on the date on which--
       (1) the Secretary of Homeland Security has adjudicated each 
     petition that is filed under section 203(a)(2)(B) (as in 
     effect on the day before the date of enactment of this Act) 
     before January 1, 2019; and
       (2) the Secretary of State has allocated to each eligible 
     alien a visa based on a petition described in paragraph (1).

     SEC. 4. BORDER SECURITY.

       (a) Definition of Secretary.--In this section, the term 
     ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of Homeland Security.
       (b) Appropriations for Border Security.--The following sum 
     is appropriated, out of any money in the Treasury not 
     otherwise appropriated, for U.S. Customs and Border 
     Protection, namely $25,000,000,000 for--
       (1) the construction of physical barriers;
       (2) border security technologies;
       (3) tactical infrastructure;
       (4) marine vessels;
       (5) aircraft;
       (6) unmanned aerial systems;
       (7) facilities; and
       (8) equipment.
       (c) Availability for Fiscal Year 2018.--Of the amount 
     appropriated by subsection (b), amounts shall be available 
     for fiscal year 2018 as follows:
       (1) For impedance and denial, $1,571,000,000.
       (2) For domain awareness, $658,000,000.
       (3) For access and mobility, $143,000,000.
       (4) For the retention, recruitment, and relocation of 
     officers of Border Patrol Agents, Customs Officers, and Air 
     and Marine personnel, $148,000,000, including for not fewer 
     than 615 officers of U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
       (5) To hire 615 U.S. Customs and Border Protection Officers 
     for deployment to ports of entry, $75,000,000.
       (d) Availability for Fiscal Years 2019 Through 2027.--
       (1) In general.--Subject to subsection (f), of the amount 
     appropriated by subsection (b), the amount available for each 
     of fiscal years 2019 through 2027 shall be $2,500,000,000.
       (2) Limitation.--Amounts appropriated under subsection (b) 
     for fiscal years 2018 and 2019 shall only be available for 
     operationally effective designs deployed as of the date of 
     the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2017 (Public Law 115-
     31), such as currently deployed steel bollard designs, that 
     prioritize agent safety.
       (e) Report on Plan for Improvement of Border Security.--
       (1) In general.--Not later than 180 days after the date of 
     the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit to the 
     Committees on Appropriations of the Senate and the House of 
     Representatives and the Committees of jurisdiction of the 
     Senate and the House of Representatives a risk-based plan

[[Page S964]]

     for improving security along the borders of the United 
     States, including the use of personnel, fencing, other forms 
     of tactical infrastructure, and technology.
       (2) Elements.--The report required by this subsection shall 
     include the following:
       (A) A statement of goals, objectives, activities, and 
     milestones for the plan.
       (B) A detailed implementation schedule for the plan with 
     estimates for the planned obligation of funds for fiscal 
     years 2019 through 2027 that are linked to the milestone-
     based delivery of specific--
       (i) capabilities and services;
       (ii) mission benefits and outcomes;
       (iii) program management capabilities; and
       (iv) lifecycle cost estimates.
       (C) A description of the manner in which specific projects 
     under the plan will enhance border security goals and 
     objectives and address the highest priority border security 
     needs.
       (D) An identification of the planned locations, quantities, 
     and types of resources, such as fencing, other physical 
     barriers, or other tactical infrastructure and technology, 
     under the plan.
       (E) A description of the methodology and analyses used to 
     select specific resources for deployment to particular 
     locations under the plan that includes--
       (i) analyses of alternatives, including comparative costs 
     and benefits;
       (ii) an assessment of effects on communities and property 
     owners near areas of infrastructure deployment; and
       (iii) a description of other factors critical to the 
     decision-making process.
       (F) An identification of staffing requirements under the 
     plan, including full-time equivalents, contractors, and 
     detailed personnel, by activity.
       (G) A description of performance metrics for the plan for 
     assessing and reporting on the contributions of border 
     security capabilities realized from current and future 
     investments.
       (H) A description of the status of the actions of the 
     Department of Homeland Security to address open 
     recommendations by the Office of Inspector General and the 
     Government Accountability Office relating to border security, 
     including plans, schedules, and associated milestones for 
     fully addressing such recommendations.
       (I) A comprehensive plan to consult State and local elected 
     officials on the eminent domain and construction process 
     relating to physical barriers;
       (J) A comprehensive analysis, following consultation with 
     the Secretary of Interior and the Administrator of the 
     Environmental Protection Agency, of the environmental impacts 
     of the construction and placement of physical barriers 
     planned along the Southwest border, including barriers in the 
     Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge;
       (K) Certifications by the Under Secretary of Homeland 
     Security for Management, including all documents, memoranda, 
     and a description of the investment review and information 
     technology management oversight and processes supporting such 
     certifications, that--
       (i) the plan has been reviewed and approved in accordance 
     with an acquisition review management process that complies 
     with capital planning and investment control and review 
     requirements established by the Office of Management and 
     Budget, including as provided in Circular A-11, part 7; and
       (ii) all activities under the plan comply with Federal 
     acquisition rules, requirements, guidelines, and practices.
       (f) Limitation on Availability for Fiscal Years 2019 
     Through 2027.--
       (1) Limitation.--The amount specified in subsection (d) for 
     each of fiscal years 2019 through 2027 shall not be available 
     for such fiscal year unless--
       (A) the Secretary submits to Congress, not later than 60 
     days before the beginning of such fiscal year, a report 
     setting forth--
       (i) a description of every planned expenditure in such 
     fiscal year under the plan required by subsection (e) in an 
     amount in excess of $50,000,000;
       (ii) a description of the total number of miles of security 
     fencing or barriers that will be constructed in such fiscal 
     year under the plan;
       (iii) a statement of the number of new U.S. Customs and 
     Border Protection Officers to be hired in such fiscal year 
     under the plan and the intended location of deployment;
       (iv) a description of the new roads to be installed in such 
     fiscal year under the plan;
       (v) a description of the land to be acquired in such fiscal 
     year under the plan, including--

       (I) all necessary land acquisitions;
       (II) the total number of necessary condemnation actions; 
     and
       (III) the precise number of landowners that will be 
     affected by the construction of such physical barriers;

       (vi) a description of the amount and types of technology to 
     be acquired for each of the northern border and the southern 
     border in such fiscal year under the plan; and
       (vii) a statement of the percentage of each of the northern 
     border and the southern border for which the Department of 
     Homeland Security will obtain full situational awareness in 
     such fiscal year under the plan; and
       (B) not later than October 1 of such fiscal year, the 
     Secretary certifies to Congress that the Department of 
     Homeland achieved not less than 75 percent of the goals of 
     the Department under the plan (other than for land 
     acquisition) for the prior fiscal year.
       (2) Availability without certification.--If the Secretary 
     is unable to make the certification described in paragraph 
     (1)(B) with respect to a fiscal year as of October 1 of the 
     succeeding fiscal year, the amount specified in subsection 
     (d) for such succeeding fiscal year shall not be available 
     except pursuant to an Act of Congress specifically making 
     such amount available for such succeeding fiscal year that is 
     enacted into law in such succeeding fiscal year.
       (g) Availability.--If amounts described in subsection (d) 
     are available for a fiscal year, such amounts shall remain 
     available for 5 years.
       (h) Limitation.--Notwithstanding any other provision of 
     law, none of the amounts appropriated under this section may 
     be reprogrammed for or transferred to any other component of 
     the Department of Homeland Security.
       (i) Budget Request.--An expenditure plan for amounts made 
     available pursuant to subsection (b)--
       (1) shall be included in each budget for a fiscal year 
     submitted by the President under section 1105 of title 31, 
     United States Code; and
       (2) shall describe planned obligations by program, project, 
     and activity in the receiving account at the same level of 
     detail provided for in the request for other appropriations 
     in that account.
       (j) Budgetary Effects.--
       (1) In general.--The budgetary effects of this section 
     shall not be entered on either PAYGO scorecard maintained 
     pursuant to section 4(d) of the Statutory Pay-As-You-Go Act 
     of 2010.
       (2) Senate paygo scorecards.--The budgetary effects of this 
     section shall not be entered on any PAYGO scorecard 
     maintained for purposes of section 4106 of H.Con.Res. 71 
     (115th Congress).
       (k) Point of Order.--
       (1) Definition.--In this subsection, the term ``covered 
     appropriation amount'' means the amount appropriated for 
     border security for a fiscal year under subsection (b).
       (2) Point of order in the senate.--
       (A) Point of order.--
       (i) In general.--In the Senate, it shall not be in order to 
     consider a provision in a bill, joint resolution, motion, 
     amendment, amendment between the Houses, or conference report 
     that would reduce the covered appropriation amount for a 
     fiscal year.
       (ii) Point of order sustained.--If a point of order is made 
     by a Senator against a provision described in clause (i), and 
     the point of order is sustained by the Chair, that provision 
     shall be stricken from the measure and may not be offered as 
     an amendment from the floor.
       (B) Form of the point of order.--A point of order under 
     subparagraph (A) may be raised by a Senator as provided in 
     section 313(e) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974 (2 
     U.S.C. 644(e)).
       (C) Conference reports.--When the Senate is considering a 
     conference report on, or an amendment between the Houses in 
     relation to, a bill or joint resolution, upon a point of 
     order being made by any Senator pursuant to subparagraph (A), 
     and such point of order being sustained, such material 
     contained in such conference report or House amendment shall 
     be stricken, and the Senate shall proceed to consider the 
     question of whether the Senate shall recede from its 
     amendment and concur with a further amendment, or concur in 
     the House amendment with a further amendment, as the case may 
     be, which further amendment shall consist of only that 
     portion of the conference report or House amendment, as the 
     case may be, not so stricken. Any such motion in the Senate 
     shall be debatable. In any case in which such point of order 
     is sustained against a conference report (or Senate amendment 
     derived from such conference report by operation of this 
     subsection), no further amendment shall be in order.
       (D) Supermajority waiver and appeal.--In the Senate, this 
     paragraph may be waived or suspended only by an affirmative 
     vote of three-fifths of the Members, duly chosen and sworn. 
     An affirmative vote of three-fifths of Members of the Senate, 
     duly chosen and sworn shall be required to sustain an appeal 
     of the ruling of the Chair on a point of order raised under 
     this paragraph.
       (l) Enforcement Priorities.--
       (1) Definitions.--In this subsection:
       (A) Felony.--
       (i) In general.--The term ``felony'' means a Federal, 
     State, or local criminal offense punishable by imprisonment 
     for a term that exceeds 1 year.
       (ii) Exclusion.--The term ``felony'' does not include a 
     State or local criminal offense for which an essential 
     element is the immigration status of an alien.
       (B) Misdemeanor.--
       (i) In general.--The term ``misdemeanor'' means a Federal, 
     State, or local criminal offense for which--

       (I) the maximum term of imprisonment is--

       (aa) greater than 5 days; and
       (bb) not greater than 1 year; and

       (II) the individual was sentenced to time in custody of 90 
     days or less.

       (ii) Exclusion.--The term ``misdemeanor'' does not include 
     a State or local offense for which an essential element is--

       (I) the immigration status of the alien;
       (II) a significant misdemeanor; or
       (III) a minor traffic offense.

       (C) Significant misdemeanor.--
       (i) In general.--The term ``significant misdemeanor'' means 
     a Federal, State, or local criminal offense--

[[Page S965]]

       (I) for which the maximum term of imprisonment is--

       (aa) more than 5 days; and
       (bb) not more than 1 year; and

       (II)(aa) that, regardless of the sentence imposed, is--

       (AA) a crime of domestic violence (as defined in section 
     237(a)(2)(E)(i)) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 
     U.S.C. 1227(a)(2)(E)(i)); or
       (BB) an offense of--
       (CC) sexual abuse or exploitation;
       (DD) burglary;
       (EE) unlawful possession or use of a firearm;
       (FF) drug distribution or trafficking; or
       (GG) driving under the influence, if the applicable State 
     law requires, as elements of the offense, the operation of a 
     motor vehicle and a finding of impairment or a blood alcohol 
     content equal to or greater than .08; or

       (bb) that resulted in a sentence of time in custody of more 
     than 90 days.

       (ii) Exclusion.--The term ``significant misdemeanor'' does 
     not include a State or local offense for which an essential 
     element is the immigration status of an alien.
       (2) Priorities.--In carrying out immigration enforcement 
     activities, the Secretary shall prioritize available 
     immigration enforcement resources to aliens who--
       (A) have been convicted of--
       (i) a felony;
       (ii) a significant misdemeanor; or
       (iii) 3 or more misdemeanor offenses;
       (B) pose a threat to national security or public safety; or
       (C)(i) are unlawfully present in the United States; and
       (ii) arrived in the United States after June 30, 2018.

     SEC. 5. OFFICE OF PROFESSIONAL RESPONSIBILITY.

       Not later than September 30, 2021, the Commissioner of U.S. 
     Customs and Border Protection shall hire, train, and assign 
     sufficient special agents at the Office of Professional 
     Responsibility.

  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The majority leader.


                             Cloture Motion

  Mr. McCONNELL. Mr. President, I send a cloture motion to the desk for 
amendment No. 1955.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The cloture motion having been presented under 
rule XXII, the Chair directs the clerk to read the motion.
  The senior assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

                             Cloture Motion

       We, the undersigned Senators, in accordance with the 
     provisions of rule XXII of the Standing Rules of the Senate, 
     do hereby move to bring to a close debate on amendment No. 
     1955 to H.R. 2579, an act to amend the Internal Revenue Code 
     of 1986 to allow the premium tax credit with respect to 
     unsubsidized COBRA continuation coverage.
         Angus S. King, Jr., Christopher A. Coons, Heidi Heitkamp, 
           Joe Donnelly, Tim Kaine, Mark R. Warner, Sheldon 
           Whitehouse, Debbie Stabenow, Margaret Wood Hassan, 
           Jeanne Shaheen, Jack Reed, Tammy Baldwin, Patty Murray, 
           Edward J. Markey, Amy Klobuchar, Richard J. Durbin, 
           Brian Schatz, Charles E. Schumer.


                             Cloture Motion

  Mr. McCONNELL. Mr. President, I send a cloture motion to the desk for 
amendment No. 1948.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The cloture motion having been presented under 
rule XXII, the Chair directs the clerk to read the motion.
  The senior assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

                             Cloture Motion

       We, the undersigned Senators, in accordance with the 
     provisions of rule XXII of the Standing Rules of the Senate, 
     do hereby move to bring to a close debate on Senate amendment 
     No. 1948 to H.R. 2579, an act to amend the Internal Revenue 
     Code of 1986 to allow the premium tax credit with respect to 
     unsubsidized COBRA continuation coverage.
         Mitch McConnell, Thom Tillis, Chuck Grassley, John 
           Cornyn, David Perdue, John Thune, Cory Gardner, Lindsey 
           Graham, Bob Corker, James Lankford, John Hoeven, Rob 
           Portman, Lamar Alexander, Steve Daines, Shelley Moore 
           Capito, Dan Sullivan.


                             Cloture Motion

  Mr. McCONNELL. Mr. President, I send a cloture motion to the desk for 
amendment No. 1958, as modified.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The cloture motion having been presented under 
rule XXII, the Chair directs the clerk to read the motion.
  The senior assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

                             Cloture Motion

       We, the undersigned Senators, in accordance with the 
     provisions of rule XXII of the Standing Rules of the Senate, 
     do hereby move to bring to a close debate on Senate amendment 
     No. 1958, as modified, to H.R. 2579, an act to amend the 
     Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to allow the premium tax credit 
     with respect to unsubsidized COBRA continuation coverage.
         Mitch McConnell, Thom Tillis, Chuck Grassley, John 
           Cornyn, David Perdue, John Thune, Cory Gardner, Lindsey 
           Graham, Bob Corker, James Lankford, Lisa Murkowski, 
           John Hoeven, Rob Portman, Lamar Alexander, Steve 
           Daines, Shelley Moore Capito.


                             CLOTURE MOTION

  Mr. McCONNELL. Mr. President, I send a cloture amendment to the desk 
for amendment No. 1959.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The cloture motion having been presented under 
rule XXII, the Chair directs the clerk to read the motion.
  The senior assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

                             Cloture Motion

       We, the undersigned Senators, in accordance with the 
     provisions of rule XXII of the Standing Rules of the Senate, 
     do hereby move to bring to a close debate on Senate amendment 
     No. 1959 to H.R. 2579, an act to amend the Internal Revenue 
     Code of 1986 to allow the premium tax credit with respect to 
     unsubsidized COBRA continuation coverage.
         Mitch McConnell, Thom Tillis, Chuck Grassley, John 
           Cornyn, David Perdue, John Thune, Cory Gardner, Lindsey 
           Graham, Bob Corker, James Lankford, John Hoeven, Rob 
           Portman, Lamar Alexander, Steve Daines, Shelley Moore 
           Capito, Dan Sullivan.

  Mr. McCONNELL. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the 
mandatory quorum calls for the cloture motions be waived.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.

                          ____________________