Immigration debate could pull Sen. Menendez away from trial

Posted: Updated:
NEWARK -

The ongoing debate about illegal immigration and what do with the children who were brought into the country illegally by their parents could pull Sen. Bob Menendez away from his federal corruption trial.

The Democratic senator has said that he plans on attending his trial every day unless he is needed in Washington for certain votes. The immigration issue may be one of those votes in a Congress where Republicans hold the majority.

Top Democrats are trying to secure a deal with President Donald Trump that would allow young people in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program to continue their legal status in the United States. 

RELATED: Trump says GOP leaders ‘on board’ in immigration talks

Sen. Chuck Schumer and Sen. Nancy Pelosi say that they reached a deal with the president Wednesday night to increase border security in exchange for keeping DACA recipients protected. But Trump later tweeted that no deal was decided on. 

Any bill on the DACA program would come down to a vote in Congress, which would likely be decided by a small margin.

It was something Menendez said weighed heavily on his mind as he entered court Thursday morning.

“I hope there can be a reasonable deal to actually do something to take care of these young people…who know no country other than the United States, who know no other anthem other than the ‘Star-Spangled Banner.’ There should be a deal for them,” he said.

Menendez is accused of taking bribes from a Florida doctor in exchange for favors.

Prosecutors continued to tell the jury Thursday about the senator’s luxury travel in 2008 through 2010, which they allege was part of the bribery plot.

Menendez and the doctor, who is also on trial, have denied the allegations and say that the gifts were between friends and weren't part of a bribery arrangement.

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