- The Washington Times - Thursday, January 11, 2018

Both Democratic and Republican leaders said Thursday they see the path to a bipartisan deal on illegal immigrant “Dreamers,” border security and the first changes to immigration policy in years, as they tried to tamp down on revolts on the right and left.

“We will be able to put together a DACA compromise that has a majority support from our party,” House Speaker Paul D. Ryan said, referring to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.

Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said that this week produced progress after Democrats realized President Trump would insist on policy changes in addition to border security as add-ons to a deal granting legal status to Dreamers.

Negotiators emerged from a meeting at the White House saying they have agreed to look at limiting the chain of family migration and slashing the Diversity Visa Lottery that gives away immigrant visas based purely on chance, in addition to adding more border security and addressing the legal status of potentially 2 million illegal immigrants.

Republicans are pushing for the most wide-ranging changes — including an end to the lottery and limiting family migration only to the nuclear family of spouses and minor children, while rank-and-file Democrats are trying to preserve as much of those programs as possible.

Democrats instead are pushing for the most generous amnesty possible for the Dreamers.

And then there’s Mr. Trump’s proposed border wall, which Democratic leaders have signaled they’ll have to accept in some fashion as part of the final deal — though their members remain deeply opposed.

Mrs. Pelosi on Thursday ruled out a tough security proposal announced a day earlier by key GOP chairmen that would also crack down on sanctuary cities, cut back on abuse of the asylum system and allow faster deportation of new illegal immigrants.

“The Democrats simply won’t support that bill. It doesn’t share any of the values we have been talking about all along. It’s a non-starter. I wouldn’t waste my time on it,” she said.

Democrats are under intense pressure from immigrant-rights organization and liberal pressure groups not to deal with the GOP and to insist only on a bill that grants legal status for Dreamers. Some of the pressure groups have said they want to see Democrats force a government shutdown showdown unless they get their way.

Politico, a politics-focused website, used the word “mutiny” to describe the debate within the Democratic Party.

But when a reporter suggested her own members were fractured over strategy and how far to go in concessions to Mr. Trump, Mrs. Pelosi shot him down.

“Our caucus is very unified. It’s very unified,” she said.

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