U.S. Senate advances border security proposal

Senators take big move toward final vote on a sweeping immigration bill, as both of Oklahoma's senators vote against pushing $38 billion security plan over procedural hurdle.
by Chris Casteel Published: June 24, 2013
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Coburn and some other Republicans characterized the proposal as political cover for those who want to support the immigration bill, which may be set for a final Senate vote later this week.

Supporters of the bill have been hoping to get as many as 70 votes in the 100-member Senate to give the bill more momentum and put pressure on the House to take up immigration legislation. The border security amendment that advanced Monday is expected to add Republican support for the overall bill.

Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., who helped craft the bill, said the Congressional Budget Office — a nonpartisan arm of Congress — had studied the proposed amendment and determined that it would reduce illegal immigration.

Schumer said the addition of 20,000 more border security agents would allow one to be stationed every 1,000 feet from San Diego to Brownsville, Texas.

At the White House, President Barack Obama told business leaders that the Senate bill — which he supports — was at a “critical point.”

“And I hope that we can get the strongest possible vote out of the Senate, so that we can then move to the House and get this done before the summer break,'' Obama said.


by Chris Casteel
Washington Bureau
Chris Casteel began working for The Oklahoman's Norman bureau in 1982 while a student at the University of Oklahoma. After covering the police beat, federal courts and the state Legislature in Oklahoma City, he moved to Washington in 1990, where...
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