(PresidentialWire.com)- Controversial Representative Ilhan Omar wants to completely ignore the recent determination by the Senate parliamentarian, and push forward with immigration reform as part of the Democrat’s massive budget reconciliation spending plan.
On Sunday, Elizabeth MacDonough, the Senate parliamentarian, ruled that Democrats can’t include in their reconciliation package a pathway for illegal aliens to become legal citizens. She said the provision they crafted fell outside the scope of what’s allowed in all reconciliation bills.
This is an extremely important fact, since bills passed through reconciliation are not subject to the Senate’s filibuster rule. In other words, only a majority of the Senate needs to vote in favor of it to pass, rather than the normal 60 Senators.
This allows Democrats to basically push through whatever legislation they want, so long as it fits within the reconciliation rules. And the pathway to citizenship clearly does not.
Despite this ruling, Omar, the progressive member of “The Squad” from Minnesota, urged the leaders of her party to ignore it and push forward anyway.
She tweeted on Sunday:
“This ruling by the parliamentarian, is only a recommendation. @SenSchumer and the @WhiteHouse can and should ignore it. We can’t miss this once in a lifetime opportunity to do the right thing.”
Except, of course, that MacDonough’s ruling is not a recommendation; it’s an official ruling.
When she made her decision, MacDonough said the immigration provision was “a policy change that substantially outweighs the budgetary impact of that change.”
Her thinking was based on the fact that 8 million people would see their immigration status changed as a result of the new provision. In addition, if included in the spending bill, the immigration provision would raise the U.S. deficit by roughly $140 billion over the next 10 years.
One of the problems of Democrats face, MacDonough said, was that if provisions that grant people a new immigration status were to be allowed through reconciliation, then another provision that stripped that status from these people could also be done that way.
“[P]ermitting this provision in reconciliation would set a precedent that could be used to argue that rescinding any immigration status from anyone — not just those who obtain LPR status by virtue of this provision — would be permissible because the policy of stripping status from any immigrant does not vastly outweigh whatever budgetary impact there might be.”
While the White House was not pleased with the decision, they are certainly understanding that the provision now can’t be included in the reconciliation process. Still, they support any efforts that Democratic senators take to try to include some measure on immigration in the package.
A spokesperson for the White House said:
“The president has made very clear that he supports efforts by Congress to include a pathway to citizenship in the reconciliation package and is grateful to congressional leadership for all of the work they are doing to make this a reality. The parliamentarian’s ruling is deeply disappointing but we fully expect our partners in the Senate to come back with alternative proposals for the parliamentarian to consider.”