Yesterday, the Senate voted 67 to 27 on a critical border security amendment, paving the way for a vote on final passage this week. The amendment was brokered by Senators Corker (R-TN) and Hoeven (R-ND). It would double the size of the border patrol and dedicate billions of additional dollars towards border security. Every Democrat and fifteen Republicans voted in the affirmative.

The Corker-Hoeven amendment likely represents the final major compromise in the Senate. It is expected that there will be a vote to end debate on Thursday, with a vote on Thursday or Friday for final passage out of the Senate.

BAL Comment: A few weeks ago, the Congressional Budget Office released a report stating that the legislation would reduce the government deficit by several hundred billion dollars. This report, along with the border security amendment that passed yesterday, suggests that the legislation is on track to pass easily through the Senate. Some proponents, including Senator Schumer (D-NY), believe that 70 votes in the Senate would place additional pressure on House Republicans to pass legislation that includes a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. Several Democrats were absent and several Republican votes remain in play, which suggests that the threshold of 70 votes may be in reach.

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