President Donald Trump said House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte will introduce immigration overhaul legislation soon but did not specify how quickly legislation might be finalized.
Trump said any such bill should be one “of love,” but added the United States also needs to enhance its border security measures and curb the flow of illegal drugs as it codifies the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program into law.
“We have something in common: we’d like to see this get done,” Trump said, according to a pool report.
At the start of a much-anticipated bipartisan White House meeting on an immigration bill, Trump reiterated his stance that any legislation that addresses DACA must also end so-called “chain migration,” terminate the visa lottery program and a move to a merit-based system.
The president also called for lawmakers in the room to “put country before party” and support his proposal for a U.S.-Mexico border wall. The proposed barrier is a major wrench in the talks, with Democrats staunchly opposed to Trump’s plans.
He also expressed desire for a long-term bill rather than one that merely extends existing programs.
“I really do believe Democrats and Republicans, the people sitting in this room, really want to get something done,” the president said, according to the pool report.
Senate Minority Whip Richard J. Durbin, D-Ill., told the president he can get Democratic support on some things, including new items for border security.