Some lawmakers say they have a deal and are going to work to get support for it in Congress. Lindsey Graham of SC and Dick Durbin of IL, had finally agreed on a plan to shield hundreds of thousands of immigrants with DACA - the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals program - from being deported. "I want a merit-based system of immigration and people who will help take our country to the next level. You tell me who the public will blame if this doesn't get done". If we can stay focused on that, I would argue that's the more important thing to focus on, not what was or was not said in a meeting.
Reports of the president's language referring to people of color from the other countries drew criticism from US lawmakers of both major parties and critics overseas who said they could not be described as anything but racist. But she added, "We haven't quite gotten there, but we feel like we're close".
Alsup also ruled the Trump administration must resume receiving DACA renewal applications, according to several news sources.
John Cornyn, the Senate's No. 2 Republican, said the ruling would not affect congressional negotiations. The president went on to suggest that if Congress failed to protect those Dreamers, he would "revisit the issue", and, ostensibly, protect them himself.
Protesters defend DACA in Tucson last fall, after Donald Trump ended the Obama-era protections for young immigrants.
When retiring Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and rising star Senator James Lankford (R-OK) introduce legislation for a permanent response to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, there's clearly a path for a reasonable legislative deal in Congress.
Federal agencies will run out of money and have to shut down if lawmakers don't pass legislation extending their financing by January 19.
And, even if a bill was voted on and passed the Senate, legislation still faces long odds in the Republican-controlled House where there the differences between Democrats and Republicans are even greater.
US President Donald Trump on Friday dismissed a bipartisan Senate immigration plan as "a big step backwards", saying it would force the United States to admit people from "high crime" countries, digging in on a position critics decried as racist.
On Tuesday, during a meeting with Congress members, Trump said that he was open to reviving DACA provided he receives a funding deal to build his much-talked-about wall along the US-Mexican border.
However, Durbin never confirmed the deal before meeting with the president. It was unclear why the three other Republicans attended.
The meeting delivered a significant setback to the bipartisan working group, which first announced the deal earlier on Thursday afternoon.
That Republican said there were several hang-ups in the meeting, including whether thousands of immigrants into the US from countries that have suffered disasters, including El Salvador, Guatemala and Haiti should continue to receive temporary protected status.
DACA shields almost 800,000 young immigrants from deportation by allowing them to work and study legally in the United States.
"Passing an amnesty bill that continues chain migration and has only fig-leaf token efforts and border security would be a serious mistake", Cruz said.
"The American people don't want that style of immigration reform", Cotton told reporters about the bipartisan senators' offer. If Democrats want a seat at the negotiating table, they should bring something to it.