Democratic and Republican Negotiators Have Reached a DEAL in Principle On Border Security

Facing a deadline of Friday before another possible government shutdown, negotiators who have been working hard have now emerged saying they have a deal on the table.

From Roll Call:

Negotiators say they have worked out an agreement on funding Homeland Security and the rest of the federal government through the end of the fiscal year.

The top four congressional appropriators said Monday they reached an “agreement in principle” on Homeland Security funding that resolves contentious issues like funding for a border barrier and the number of detention beds reserved for undocumented immigrants apprehended in the country.

“We’ve had a good evening. We reached an agreement in principle between us on the Homeland Security and the other six bills. Our staffs are going to be working feverishly to put all the particulars together,” Senate Appropriations Chairman Richard C. Shelby told reporters late Monday. “That’s all we can tell you now. We’re not getting into numbers and everything.”

What precisely the details of the deal are, they aren’t yet saying officially. A Democratic congressional source is saying however that the deal involves $1.375 billion for border barriers (border fencing) and 40,520 cap on overall ICE beds down 17% from the current 49,057 level.

One hopes that they didn’t lock the DHS into some untenable position on detention beds because limiting that would force DHS to release criminals into society.

The only thing they didn’t address in the budget was disaster appropriations which Shelby said they would be dealing with separately.

They hope to have the formal legislative text ready by Wednesday for people to view and then to vote.

Rep. Nita Lowey (D-NY), the House Appropriations Chair, said that she believes Speaker Nancy Pelosi will support it. “Some people may think it’s a great deal. Some people may come and attack it. But we did it together,” Lowey said.

It remains to be seen if President Donald Trump will sign aboard it. Shelby said that he believed he would.

In addition to Shelby and Lowey, the negotiations involved Democratic Sen. Patrick J. Leahy of Vermont and Republican Rep. Kay Granger of Texas.