A vote to bring the so-called border security amendment to the Senate floor for debate passed easily on Monday night, clearing the way for a cloture vote on the entire reform measure scheduled for Thursday:
The Senate voted Monday to advance a border security amendment to bipartisan immigration legislation, building momentum for a final vote later this week.
The vote stood at 66-26 at 6:30 Monday evening and was being held open to allow more senators to return to Washington to vote.
Fourteen of the yes votes were Republicans, suggesting supporters could hit the 70-vote threshold they hope to reach in the final vote. It is thought a big, bipartisan vote could put pressure in the GOP-held House, where immigration reform faces dimmer prospects.
Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) and Sen. Rob Portman (Ohio) were among the notable Republican no votes.