President Donald Trump signaled an about-face Friday on immigration reform, calling on Congress to wait until after November's elections to ride what he called a "red wave" of new Republican lawmakers. Dems are just playing games.
Republicans had planned to take two immigration votes on Thursday, even though both were unlikely to pass and even less likely to be considered in the Senate.
President Donald Trump has vowed to secure the US' worldwide borders and prevent people from illegally entering America, and said that he wants only those based on merit to come inside the country, amid a major immigration row.
Days after insisting that Congress act immediately, President Donald Trump is telling Republicans to "stop wasting their time" on immigration until after the November elections.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said the more moderate Republican bill is "a compromise with the devil".
They postponed a vote on another bill until next week.
First a hardline proposal was defeated, as expected, by 193 votes to 231.
He focused on the fact that young migrants separated from parents are likely to be reunited, unlike the victims of murders.
Virginia's two Democratic senators asked the Trump administration for answers about operations at a juvenile detention facility in the state where immigrant children said they were bound, beaten and isolated in solitary confinement.
But that order isn't legally tenable: The administration still intends to jail all migrants who commit the misdemeanor offense of crossing the southern border between official points of entry - which means that, to keep families together, our government must incarcerate innocent children with their parents.
Trump signs executive order to end family separations
They are also suing the government in the hope that a federal judge will stop family separations via a court order. Under a court settlement, the federal government can not hold the children for more than 20 days.
More than 2,300 children were taken from their families at the border in recent weeks.
And in a tweet that seemed to undermine House leaders' efforts to round up votes, he questioned the objective of their legislation by suggesting it was doomed in the Senate anyway.
The president had argued for days that only Congress could solve the border crisis.
And while Melania Trump sought to demonstrate concern with a surprise visit to migrant children at the border Thursday, the administration remained under siege amid continued accounts of parents unable to find their children and no system in place for reuniting them.
"These are the stories that Democrats and people that are weak on immigration, they don't want to discuss", he said.
"I was welcomed here", a tearful Rep. Norma Torres, D-Calif., said during House debate, describing her journey to the U.S.as a child from Guatemala.
The so-called compromise legislation already suffered one setback earlier Thursday when it was pulled from the floor and delayed until Friday after it appeared to be heading toward defeat.
Trump said the USA wants people to come in, but in the proper way. "We can not allow our Country to be overrun by illegal immigrants as the Democrats tell their phony stories of sadness and grief, hoping it will help them in the elections", he tweeted.
A vote on the compromise bill was initially scheduled for Thursday but then pushed back to Friday as it became clear there wasn't enough support for the measure. The policy has resulted in more than 2,300 children being separated from their parents.
Meanwhile, officials say up to 20,000 children will be housed at military bases from July.
"Everybody is sensitive to what the president is saying", said Rep. Paul Cook, R-Calif., who's undecided on the immigration measure.