Tags: chuck schumer | mitch mcconnell | daca | deal

Sen. Schumer: Holding McConnell's 'Feet to Fire' on Deal

Sen. Schumer: Holding McConnell's 'Feet to Fire' on Deal
(AP)

By    |   Wednesday, 24 January 2018 07:57 AM

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on Tuesday night said there's no guarantee that Mitch McConnell will keep his promise of a clean Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) vote, but vowed to "hold his feet to the fire."

Schumer made the comments on MSNBC's "The Rachel Maddow Show," his first TV interview since last weekend's shutdown saga.

"Is there a guarantee McConnell keeps his word? No," Schumer told Maddow. "But we're going to hold his feet to the fire.

"And the thing about McConnell's promise, he didn't just make it to me. He made it to 10 Republican members of his caucus. A leader is very, very reluctant to break a promise to members of his caucus," Schumer said.

It was McConnell's promise of a debate that spurred Schumer to agree to end the shutdown Monday, a move that wrought a ton of criticism down on Schumer for not securing permanent protections for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients first.

"We advanced the cause," Schumer told Maddow. "What people have to understand and I think most people do … we don't have the levers of power. We have a Republican president, Republican Senate, a Republican House, all three of the most anti-immigration that there is."

Schumer asserted that Democrats had to end the shutdown, otherwise support for DACA would wane while anger over the shutdown would increase.

"All of us in the Democratic Caucus, not just the moderates, but liberals as well came to the view that if we carried it on much longer, two things would happen: A, no one would budge. The public would lose support of the shutdown," Schumer said.

"The public does not like shutdowns and we'd actually lose support for Dreamers, too, because people love the Dreamers but don't want the government shut down for it.

"So, we cut the best deal we could," Schumer said.

Regardless, Schumer says Democrats are in a better place now than before the shutdown.

"If the Senate passes the bill and it's bipartisan, there may be enough moderate and mainstream Republicans in the House … who will feel they have to come across, particularly if these sons of guns wait until after March 5," Schumer said.

"And I think, God forbid, but the pictures of people being deported will rally the nation, and these more mainstream Republicans admittedly, not a majority of the Republican Party, but enough when they add them to Democrats, could pass the bill," Schumer said.

"And then you have the whimsical — that's a kind word — Donald Trump. He may wake up one morning and say, 'get this bill done.' We're still in play. We're in better shape than we were five days ago," Schumer said.

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Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on Tuesday night said there's no guarantee that Mitch McConnell will keep his promise of a clean Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) vote. . .
chuck schumer, mitch mcconnell, daca, deal
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2018-57-24
Wednesday, 24 January 2018 07:57 AM
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