Rep. Greg Gianforte discusses long-term budget bill, immigration - KFBB.com News, Sports and Weather

Rep. Greg Gianforte discusses long-term budget bill, immigration reform

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MISSOULA -

Federal government services were fully restored and operational on Tuesday, one day after Congress passed and the president signed a short-term spending bill.

But lawmakers have just 16 days until it expires.

Congressman Greg Gianforte (R-MT) says that he's ready to get a spending bill passed.

In fact, he says that he was ready to do so back in September.

"The House has passed nearly 500 bills since the beginning of September, almost 400 of those are sitting in the Senate, like Resilient Federal Forests, like immigration reform, like long-term funding for our government," said Rep. Greg Gianforte.

ABC FOX Montana's Angela Marshall met with the congressman, who is up for re-election this year in the Missoula studio.

There, they discussed the recent government shutdown and what he thinks needs to be done to get a long-term budget bill passed.

The key sticking point for Senate Democrats and Republicans was a solution to DACA, also known as the Dreamers Act.

The agreement reached on Monday does not include a DACA fix, but it does come with a commitment from Republican leaders to negotiate a deal for DREAMers, along with continuing talks on the budget and other priorities.

Here's how he would like immigration reform to proceed:

"There is a package of immigration reform, which includes dealing with DACA. We have to do that. But at the same time, if we don't secure the borders and deal with chain migration, which allows immigrants to bring all of their family and friends over, and finally we have to deal with this diversity lottery."

Rep. Gianforte says that that plan has been sitting in the Senate for months.  

Whether senators, both Republican and Democrat, agree upon it will remain to be seen.

The short-term spending bill expires on Thursday, February 8.

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