Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) was the only senator to oppose moving toward an immigration fight on the Senate floor.
Senators voted 97-1 on ending debate over whether or not to take up the House-passed bill being used as a vehicle for the Senate’s debate.
A spokesman for Cruz didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment about why the conservative firebrand voted “no.”
But the Texas Republican has frequently said he does not believe so-called Dreamers —immigrants brought into the country illegally as children — should be given a path to citizenship.
The Senate is expected to officially start its immigration debate as soon as Tuesday, with senators from both parties expected to propose a wide array of proposals.
Any amendment will need 60 votes to get attached to the unrelated House bill. The legislation will also have to overcome the threat of a final 60-vote filibuster.
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