As the United States budget is fiercely debated in the House and Senate, the Democratic challenger to U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers’ seat here in Eastern Washington visited KREM 2.

This, following McMorris Rodgers’ appearance on our morning show late last month.

Lisa Brown, a former state legislator and - more recently - the chancellor of WSU-Spokane, said Wednesday she believed Congress should come to an agreement on the budget, but noted her support of the so-called “DREAMers,” children brought to the United States at a young age.

“This is the most significant and urgent issue to me. The 'DREAMers' who are pursuing their education kind-of had the rug pulled out from under them in September and there are 100 a day that are currently losing their status, that goes up to 1000 in March,” Brown said. “I’d like to see Congress just pass the DREAM act, give those students who are right there in Eastern Washington, I’ve met them, from Whitworth and Eastern and WSU, give them the certainty they’ll be able to continue their studies and give them the peace of mind as well.”

The U.S. Senate’s Republican and Democratic leaders announced a two-year budget agreement Wednesday morning. House Minority leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. said the agreement did nothing to protect the “DREAMers” and launched and eight hour marathon speech on their behalf.

When McMorris Rodgers spoke to KREM 2 last month, she agreed there must be a bipartisan fix for immigration.

When asked about the military parade President Trump has requested the Pentagon to consider, Brown said she did not think the people of Eastern Washington were interested.

“I’ve been going throughout the Eastern Washington district for a couple of months now and what I’m hearing people say is they would like to see Congress pass a budget and then focus on the things that are really of concern to them,” Brown said. “Affordable healthcare is at the top of the list, and I’m guessing that if faced with the choice between focusing on healthcare, finishing the DREAM act, maybe working on the cost of higher education, or a military parade, they would prefer that they do the former.”

Brown said she believes residents of Washington’s 5th District want their U.S. representative to work with both sides of the aisle.

“When I first was serving in the legislature, our congressperson was Tom Foley. He was known for working with both sides of the aisle and getting things done,” Brown explained. “I think people are ready to get back to that.”

“I think that’s what people are looking for: civility, sitting down, talking to each other and working it out on behalf of everyone,” she said.

McMorris Rodgers has been the representative for the 5th District since 2005. The next general election for the district is Nov. 6, 2018.