Photo: U.S. Senate
The Senate on Wednesday approved continuing the procedure to bring to a vote the Democratic bill to provide $2.7 billion in supplementary emergency funding to deal with the crisis on the U.S.-Mexico border.
The motion to end debate prevailed by a vote of 63-33. Ten Republicans supported the measure.
Two Democrats facing tough re-election contests, Louisiana’s Mary Landrieu and Kay Hagan of North Carolina, voted against moving forward with the funding bill.
The text, which provides $1 billion less than what President Barack Obama requested to deal with the influx of unaccompanied undocumented minors from Central America, includes $615 million in emergency funds for forest fires in the western United States and an extra $225 million for Israel, bringing the total cost of the legislation to more than $3.5 billion.
Meanwhile, Republicans in the House of Representatives are preparing a bill for $659 million in funding, most of which will be directed at strengthening border security, as an alternative to increasing funding to deal with the influx of undocumented child migrants from Central America.
The House bill also contains changes to the 2008 law on people trafficking that Democrats have rejected, increasing the chances that Congress will begin its August recess without having approved any financing to handle the border crisis.
Voting on the two bills potentially will be held on Thursday.