Carper Statement on the Senate’s Failed Votes to Protect Dreamers and Improve Border Security

WASHINGTON—U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-Del.) released the following statement after the Senate failed to open debate on several proposals that would protect Dreamers and strengthen border security.

“My wife often says that I’m too optimistic. I’m not an optimist today.

“Very soon, I’ll be on a train headed home from Washington feeling like we haven’t done our job here. In fact, it’s not a feeling at all – I know we haven’t done our job. Meanwhile, my Republican colleagues say that the president has done his. Well, with all due respect to my friends on the other side of the aisle, I just do not agree. I served as governor, and when we had an impasse on difficult issues, we would communicate, collaborate and compromise with each other, and use civility. We did not demonstrate enough of that today.

“The months have come and gone since the Trump Administration announced the abrupt end of the DACA program, and Dreamers are still living in uncertainty and fear of deportation. The administration’s arbitrary decision on DACA has created a world of uncertainty for our business community, too, which relies on these hardworking and highly qualified individuals for a strong workforce.

“Despite Democrats’ earnest efforts to build bipartisan consensus and solve the crisis for Dreamers created by the president, today many of my colleagues broke their repeated promises that they would work with us in good faith on a bipartisan deal that protects Dreamers. When the opportunity arose, they did not take it. Not only did they reject an effort to do something to help these hardworking young men and women, they voted against measures that would secure our border and make every American safer. All the while, our own Department of Homeland Security pressured our Republican colleagues with a frenzied deluge of press releases riddled with inaccuracies and falsehoods.

“The bright side of this dark day in the Senate is that the American people can now see clearly how much Democrats are willing to compromise to protect these deserving young people. The Senate will be back in 10 days, and I hope we’ll be able to snatch victory out of the jaws of defeat.”