Biden Meets with Republicans to Reach Border Bill Compromise

( – On Monday, May 20th, President Joe Biden reached out to Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) about passing a border legislation that would increase security at the southern border. The White House is pushing the bill called the Border Act for the second time after a version of the bill stalled in the Senate in February.

Previously the Border Act was attached to U.S. foreign aid for Ukraine and Israel. This time the bill would stand alone. According to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), the only reason Republicans did not vote to pass the legislation they helped to craft in February was because Donald Trump told them not to, claiming it would be a “political win” for Biden. Schumer accused Republicans of not wanting to improve the border situation and said, “Maybe they are happy with the way things are.”

The bill would provide thousands more border patrol agents, upgrade technology to help with fentanyl tracking, change the way people seeking asylum are processed into the country, and give Biden the executive authority to close the border when it becomes “overwhelmed.”

Johnson has declared that if the bill reaches the House, it is “dead on arrival.” Biden asked for the Republican leaders to “stop playing politics” and pass the bipartisan border bill which he previously endorsed as a “strong compromise” because neither side “got everything it wanted.”

Republicans have called the bill “politically motivated” since border security is a top priority for voters ahead of the presidential election in November where Trump and Biden will once again be rivals. Trump has promised to reinstate his previous border policies such as completing the border wall, the Remain in Mexico policy, and mass deportations.

McConnell said that during his phone call with Biden, he encouraged the President to “step up” and implement the Trump-era policies. McConnell reportedly told Biden, “Mr. President, you caused this problem.”

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