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Senate Majority Leader effectively kills amendment on immigration

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
June 13th, 2013
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Formally killing an amendment to the immigration bill, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) made a move to nullify a stipulation from Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA). The amendment required border security before America's at least 11 million illegal immigrants are granted amnesty.

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Reid filed a motion to "table" the amendment, which will push for an up-or-down vote. Tabling the amendment puts it in a conundrum: A vote in favor of tabling the amendment would effectively kill it and a vote against tabling the amendment would allow it to move through for debate.

Henceforth, a vote for Reid's motion is a vote against securing the border before amnesty and a vote against Reid's motion is a vote for securing the border before granting amnesty.

The Senate Reference guide describes a motion to table as: "The motion is used to dispose quickly of questions the Senate does not wish to consider further."

Reid's motion to table the amendment passed 57-43, with Gang of Eight Republican Sens. John McCain (R-AZ). Marco Rubio (R-FL), Jeff Flake (R-AZ) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) voting with Reid. Democrat Sens. Joe Manchin and Mark Pryor voted against Reid in favor of border security before amnesty, as did Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH). Ayotte had previously indicated support for the Gang of Eight bill.

Reid's decision comes during the first week of debate on what will likely drag on until close to the Fourth of July recess. Losing Grassley's support up front on process is dangerous for Reid, too, as Grassley is a key Republican leader on issues that involve immigration.

Grassley argued this week that the "so-called open and fair process" the Democrats and the "Gang of Eight" Republicans have promised "is a farce . This is not the right way to start off on a very important bill," Grassley said.

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