Senate Votes 81-18 To Reopen Government Through February 8th

The hard details are as-yet still hearsay, but the Senate just voted to end the filibuster on the continuing resolution sent over by the House last week and reopen the government for another 17 days.

If Trump signs it, of course. We don't really know whether he will or not.

This bill would extend CHIP for six years, taking that bargaining tool out of Republicans' hands.

Still, it's a bitter pill, given that we're in this dysfunctional loop of having Dems enable Republicans on the basis of weak and empty promises from the likes of Mitch McConnell.

Here is Chuck Schumer's floor speech explaining what will happen next.

TL:DR: 15-day CR, CHIP extension, if no DACA resolution by 2/15 a vote triggered on clean DREAM Act.

Thank you, Mr. President. Now, today, we drink seltzer.

Today we enter the third day of the Trump shutdown. The first ever real shutdown to occur when one party controls the entire legislative process. The Republican party controls the House, the Senate, the Presidency, and yet they were unable to keep the government open for the American people.

Leader McConnell knows it takes 60 votes to win passage of a spending bill, and yet he moved forward with a last-minute extension that he knew lacked the votes. Both Democrats and Republicans voted against that bill.

The reason the Republican majority had such difficulty finding consensus is they could never get a firm grip on what the President of their party wanted to do. These days you never know who to deal with when it comes to the Republicans.

The Republican leaders told me to work out a deal with the White House. The White House said work it out with Republican leaders on the Hill. Separately, President Trump turned away from not one, but two, bipartisan compromises.

Each would have averted this shutdown. Each would have led to a deal on the budget and health care and disaster aid and things like opioids and veterans and pensions and on immigration.

My recent offer to the president was a generous one. I put campaign issue on the table in exchange for DACA, and still he turned away. President Trump's unwillingness to compromise caused the Trump shutdown and brought us to this moment. The facts are well known.


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Now I wish to update the Senate on where things stand after this weekend. Since our meeting in the Oval office on Friday, the president and I have not spoken.

And the White House refused to engage in negotiations over the weekend. The great deal-making president sat on the sidelines. Despite and because of this frustration, I've been having conversations with the Republican leader over the weekend about a path forward.

After several discussions, offers, counteroffers, the Republican leader and I have come to an arrangement. We will vote today to reopen the government to continue negotiating a global agreement with the commitment that if an agreement isn't reached by February the 8th, the senate will immediately proceed to consideration of legislation dealing with DACA.

The process will be neutral and fair to all sides.

We expect that a bipartisan bill on DACA will receive fair consideration and an up or down vote on the floor. Now, it's a shame, Mr. President, that the American people and the Senate have had to endure such hand-wringing, finger-pointing stridency to reach a guarantee that we will likely address this urgent issue.

It is something the majority could have avoided entirely, a concern the president could have obviates if he were only willing to answer.

While this procedure will not satisfy everyone on both sides, it's a way forward. I'm confident that we can get the 60 votes in the senate for a DACA bill. And now there is a real pathway to get a bill on the floor and through the Senate.

It is a good solution, and I will vote for it. I'm incredibly grateful to the bipartisan group that has come together in recent days to renew the immigration debate with a sense of urgency.

There you are. I believe that this group has the potential to return the senate to the kind of place it should be on the issue of immigration, a place for bipartisanship, a place for action, a place for achievement. The bipartisan group, in a very fine way, filled the glaring absence of the president in these talks.

I expect the majority leader to fulfill his commitment to the Senate, to me and to the bipartisan group and abide by this agreement. If he does not, of course, and I expect he will, he will have breached the trust of not only the Democratic Senators but members of his own party as well.

Through these complicated and lengthy negotiations, Democrats have always sought to be reasonable, to act in good faith and get something real done. Despite all of our entreaties, the president was obstinate.

The Senate has muddled along too long from our most impressive challenges until the last moment. That ends today. The Republican majority now has 17 days to prevent the Dreamers from being deported.

Mr. President, we have a way to address the fate of the Dreamers. Starting right now, instead of waiting until March, with the minority and the moderate middle empowered to bring a bill to the floor instead of being held by the most strident, anti-immigration voices in the Republican caucus.

And we, on our side of the aisle, will continue to fight as strongly as we can for the Dreamers in the weeks ahead. I say to all Americans, urge your senators to vote yes on the bipartisan compromise when it comes forward.

Write, tweet, e-mail, phone, visit, do everything you can so we can finally pass this bill.

In a few hours, the government will reopen. We have a lot to do. The issue of the Dreamers demands resolution. A budget must be written. Health care has to be addressed. Relief provided to disaster-stricken parts of our country. Pensions and opioids, veterans, childcare. All have to be taken care of.

The Trump shutdown will soon end. But the work must go on. And it will. Thank you and I yield the floor.

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