"The President seems to have forgotten that he does not possess the authority to re-write our immigration laws and that, on the contrary, the Constitution requires that he take care that the laws be faithfully executed," the Kentucky Republican said in a statement first reported by the conservative website Breitbart.com and provided to TPM. "The House has passed two bills to address the humanitarian crisis on our southern border, and the Senate should vote on them. That’s why I began the process of putting them on the Senate’s legislative calendar shortly before the current recess, and I urge Majority Leader [Harry] Reid to schedule a vote on these bills as soon as the Senate returns."
Reid can permit or block a vote at his discretion.
Democrats fiercely oppose the bills. One of them provides emergency funds to address the influx of unaccompanied minors and changes a 2008 law in order to send them home quickly; the other reverses the president's 2012 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program and precludes any future deferred action for people in the U.S. illegally.
McConnell's statement comes ahead of a planned executive action by President Barack Obama to expand his deportation relief program to other low-priority migrants.