CNN senior congressional correspondent Manu Raju reported Monday that the Democratic caucus is frustrated and divided about the deal struck by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) to end the government shutdown.
“Inside Politics” host John King said some Democrats against the deal may be partly motivated by calculations for a 2020 presidential campaign. King named Sens. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.), Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D., N.Y.) as members of that group, and Raju noted Sen. Kamala Harris (D., Calif.) is also voicing her displeasure.
“Kamala Harris just told reporters that she’s disappointed,” Raju said before sharing what Harris’ colleagues quoted her as saying.
Raju said Harris described the conversation surrounding the shutdown as a “false choice” between funding the government and taking care of recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA) program, which provides legal protections to immigrants brought to the United States illegally as children.
Raju also said Harris’ collegue, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D., Calif.), was “disappointed.”
“Senator Dianne Feinstein, her fellow California Democrat, has told reporters also she’s disappointed,” Raju said.
He added that he’s talked to progressive senators and groups who are very unhappy with the deal.
“This is the divide within the Democratic caucus on this deal, and it’s going to get more pronounced if this deal, this DACA deal, does not get passed in the coming weeks,” he said.
King then asked what progressives expect from Schumer in future negotiations, since in the short-term government funding bill passed Monday, Republicans did not make a firm commitment on DACA. Raju said the biggest test Schumer must pass is getting a DACA deal, which will be difficult because moderate Democrats face tough reelection prospects in 2018.
“He’s got to deliver a deal that would essentially give legal status to these Dreamers,” Raju said. “The challenge for him is he’s got all these moderate Democrats who are up for reelection. So he has to balance the moderates and the progressives in his caucus. In a lot of ways, he’s got to be more concerned about those red-state Democrats–from states that Trump won overwhelmingly–because they’re up for reelection.”
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