Pres. Trump says he won't sign 'moderate' GOP immigration bill

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"These are laws that have been broken for many years, decades", Trump said. A 2008 anti-trafficking law which requires unaccompanied migrant children to be sent into the care of Health and Human Services - another statute blamed by the administration for the family separation - was passed unanimously by Congress and signed into law by former president George W. Bush, a Republican. Despite the backlash, the president has defended the policy, which went into effect in May.

She told reporters at a contentious White House briefing Thursday that Democrats "have refused to come to the table and be part of a solution".

House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., said he plans to allow a floor vote on two bills, one a conservative measure that offers temporary protection for Dreamers, immigrant youth brought into this country illegally.

"The Democrats, by the way, are very weak on immigration", Trump told Fox News host Steve Doocy.

Both bills seemed to be longshots.

The White House has cited the Bible in defending its "zero tolerance" approach to illegal border crossings.

But hours later, White House officials walked back his comments, saying he was referring to a separate proposal.

Before the meeting, some Republicans were skittish that the President could thwart the hard-fought compromise bill with a random tweet or off-the-cuff comment.

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But Trump's backing has been seen as crucial, and his apparent pullback of support would be an embarrassing setback.

The result has been a haphazard series of targeted legislative proposals from different factions of the GOP that address pieces of the problem, instead of a broader immigration overhaul effort. And a source in the conservative Freedom Caucus source was even harsher: "It's a total miscue from the administration". Both bills have that.

Moderates, in particular, were frustrated by the seeming change of heart.

"I'm looking at both of them", Trump responded. "We have one chance to get it right". So Ryan gets to keep his job for 200 more days, thwarts the will of the House majority and avoids offending Donald Trump.

The Goodlatte bill has zero chance of getting out of the House, let alone passing the Senate, where it will need at least a handful of Democrats to clear a cloture vote. Bob Goodlatte of Virginia - appeals to the more conservative hardline wing of the party.

While people around the country hit the streets protesting separating children from their parents at the US border, Republican House members are crafting an immigration bill that would end family separations, as the USA plans to reopen a tent shelter to house migrant children.

A draft obtained by The Washington Post sketches out how DACA recipients could obtain permanent legal status - and eventually citizenship - under a Republican compromise.

On the Senate side, all 49 Senate Democrats have signed on to a bill from Sen.

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Families Belong Together coordinator Shannon Heesacker McClain said politics should not keep families apart. It does not call for family separation. It ends "catch and release", a policy that requires authorities to release persons who enter the USA illegally while they await a hearing before an immigration judge.

The policy has become a political flashpoint, with some Republicans trying to distance themselves from it. "I think it's a very good compromise and this can make law". It prohibits the separation of undocumented families.

- When immigrant families are detained while entering border, children must be kept with parents while in custody of Homeland Security Department. But, he says, "I certainly wouldn't sign the more moderate one".

In the new legislation, children would now be held in the same place as their parents if they are detained.

If local law enforcement officials did not comply with an Immigration and Customs Enforcement request to hold an immigrant who is in the country illegally, and that immigrant was released and later commited rape, murder or sexual assault of a minor, the victim or the victim's family would be allowed to sue the jurisdiction, according to a draft of the bill released Thursday.

"So you put them in a correctional facility with their parents?"

Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, a moderate Republican from Florida, told reporters that he was confident Trump would sign the legislation.

"That's a Democrat bill". It was focused on freeing and otherwise helping children who come to the border without a parent or guardian. "That's why I think legislation is necessary".

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