US Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer
US Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer AFP

Senate Republicans have once again blocked a bill aimed at reducing the number of migrants allowed to claim asylum at the U.S.-Mexico border.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., brought the legislation forward Thursday amid Republican opposition to the proposal, but it was taken down 43-50 by the senators.

"We gave Republicans a second chance to show where they stand," Schumer said after the vote. "Do they want to fix this so-called emergency or do they want to show blind allegiance to the former president even when they know he's wrong?" Associated Press reported.

The bill, which was negotiated by a bipartisan group of senators, faced rejection by most Republicans in February when it was tied to a foreign aid package for Ukraine, Israel, and other U.S. allies.

Schumer and his colleagues have called for comprehensive border security measures that balance humanitarian concerns with effective control.

Republicans have criticized the Biden administration's handling of the border, arguing that more stringent measures are needed to prevent illegal immigration.

Immigration and border security have become prominent issues in this year's election, with Democrats seeking to counter GOP criticisms led by Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee.

Schumer is strategically portraying Republican resistance to key legislative measures as he works to defend a narrow Senate majority in this year's election. He views the GOP's rejection of a bipartisan border security bill as a political "gift" for Democrats, aiming to highlight Republican opposition to popular initiatives.

Schumer said that if Democrats win majorities in the Senate and House next year, he wants to advance "comprehensive immigration reform."

The Democrat is also planning to push forward a bill in June that would protect access to contraception. He believes this will "show the public who's on what side" and intends to dedicate significant time to discussing reproductive rights during that month.

On Thursday, Senate Democrats largely supported a procedural vote to begin debate on the border bill, but it failed to advance with a 43-50 vote. All but one Republican, Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, opposed the motion.

When the proposal was previously brought up in February, it failed with a 49-50 vote, falling short of the 60 votes required to move forward.

But this time around, even some of the bill's primary authors, Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (I-Ariz.), did not support Schumer's motion.