FILE - In this June 15, 2018, file photo, the Capitol is seen in Washington. The Senate is taking up a $145 billion spending bill to fund the Energy Department and veterans' programs for the next budget year. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

The Latest: Trump, GOP debate immigration fix

June 19, 2018 - 10:05 am

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on Congress and immigration (all times local):

9:55 a.m.

Republican Rep. Bob Goodlatte of Virginia says lawmakers "need to do everything we can" to make sure children can stay with parents who cross the border illegally.

Goodlatte is chairman of the House Judiciary Committee and a key player on immigration legislation before the House this week. He said in an interview Tuesday on CNN that he has no objections to keeping migrant families together.

He says he is backing the two House immigration bills that are set to come up for a vote. Goodlatte authored one of the measures, which is favored by conservatives.

A rival, compromise GOP immigration measure includes language curbing the separation of immigrant children from parents when they are detained. Lawmakers also hope to add that language to a more conservative measure.

If neither bill can pass, Goodlatte says he will take a look at a simpler, short-term bill sponsored by Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, that would keep families together.

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12:55 a.m.

President Donald Trump and House Republicans are set for a crucial meeting as lawmakers push to end the policy of separating children from their parents at the southern border.

Members of both parties are decrying the administration's "zero tolerance" approach to migrant detention. Many of them are demanding that the administration act to keep families together.

Legislation in the House could end the family separations, but it appears unlikely to pass. Senators say they may soon work on a bill of their own.

The Trump administration says the family separations are required under the law and can only be ended by Congress. Democrats say Trump is refusing to take responsibility for his own policy.

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