Senate parliamentarian sets back Dems' immigration push

·1-min read
Capital Breach Rally (Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)
Capital Breach Rally (Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

Democrats can’t use their $3.5 trillion package bolstering social and climate programs to give millions of immigrants a chance to become citizens, the Senate’s parliamentarian said late Sunday, a crushing blow to what was the party’s clearest pathway in years to attaining that long-sought goal.

The decision by Elizabeth MacDonough, the Senate’s nonpartisan interpreter of its often enigmatic rules, is a damaging and disheartening setback for President Joe Biden congressional Democrats and their allies in the pro-immigration and progressive communities. It badly damages Democrats’ hopes of unilaterally enacting — over Republican opposition — changes letting several categories of immigrants gain permanent residence and possibly citizenship.

MacDonough's decision was described by a person informed about the ruling who would describe it only on condition of anonymity.

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