WASHINGTON — Nearly two dozen House Republicans on Thursday pressed Speaker Paul Ryan to act quickly on legislation that would protect some 800,000 young immigrants brought illegally to the United States as children.
The lawmakers said efforts to grant such deportation protection would easily pass the House, with dozens in the GOP set to join Democrats in backing any bill.
The immigrants are facing an uncertain future after President Trump’s decision to end Obama-era temporary protections. Trump has given Congress until March to come up with a fix.
Democrats repeatedly have pressed for a legislative solution.
Now, this show of support from Republicans, including some from competitive House districts, reflects a political shift.
Representative Dan Newhouse, a Washington Republican, said at the Capitol Hill news conference that their remarks were meant to encourage Ryan and ‘‘maybe put a little pressure on him as well to come forward with that solution that a majority of Republicans can support.’’
Ryan said ‘‘active discussions are underway with members’’ about the issue, but said he saw no need to act before Trump’s deadline.
Minority leader Nancy Pelosi reiterated on Thursday that her intention is to have legislation this year.
‘‘We’re not kicking the can down to March,’’ she said.
Representative Joe Barton, a Texas Republican, predicted widespread backing in the 435-member House.
Newhouse said that including the deportation protection in a year-end spending bill to keep the government open is not their first option. But, he added, that ‘‘if in order to be successful in this issue that is an option that is open to us, I think a lot of people would probably be open to that.’’
House conservatives warned Ryan last month against doing that.
Ryan said Thursday that he favors considering the issue ‘‘separately, on its own merits.’’