Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) hit the GOP over the tanked bipartisan Senate border bill on Sunday, claiming House Republicans decided to kill the bill in order to help former President Trump win the 2024 election.
The sweeping border security and asylum overhaul bill initially had strong bipartisan support in the Senate last week, but it fell apart after Trump and the House GOP went against it. Murphy said in a CBS “Face the Nation” interview that Republicans didn’t want to hand Biden a win by passing it.
“As soon as Republicans realized that it was actually going to fix the border, they voted against it en masse because they want the border to remain chaotic, because it helps President Trump and his reelection efforts,” Murphy said.
In coming out against the deal, Trump said that it would help Biden by proving Democrats could pass substantive border policy. Republicans have since called on Biden to shut down the border using executive power — a power the president says he does not have.
“He does not have the legal authority to shut down the border. Our bill, our bipartisan bill, would have given him that authority,” Murphy said. “If crossings were too high on a daily basis, the president could shut down portions of the border.”
“The asylum system is broken. He can’t fix that by executive order,” he continued. “It takes 10 years for people to get an asylum claim processed; many of them don’t have legitimate claims. Only legislation can fix that. Our bill would have done that.”
The end of the border security bill has thrown other legislative priorities up in the air for Democrats. Republicans promised passage for billions in foreign aid alongside the border security bill, but the falling out has put the future of Ukraine aid into question.
Murphy said that he is “optimistic” the foreign security supplemental will pass the Senate this week, but it is unclear if the House will pass it as well.