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Immigration Reform Hopes Dim

Wednesday, February 26, 2014   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Gregg Robertson
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Immigration ReformCAMBRIDGE, MD. - For a brief period in late January, there appeared to be some hope that immigration reform could actually get done in this session of Congress. House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) had said that the House Republican Conference would put together a set of principles upon which they would advance a set of immigration reform bills this year.

House Republican Retreat

At the end of the two-day retreat of the House Republican Conference on the Eastern Shore of Maryland in early February, Speaker Boehner’s office did release a one page outline of immigration reform principles. Click here to download a copy of the House Republican Conference immigration reform principals.

Hopes Quickly Dashed

However, the internal process of developing the principles was so contentious and reaction from the Tea Party wing so negative, that any hopes for action in 2014 were quickly dashed just days after the principles were released.

After seeing the principals, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) said that he saw no chance that the House and Senate could agree on an immigration reform bill in 2014. The Senate had passed and sent to the House a bipartisan immigration reform bill back in June of 2013.

Impact on 2016 Presidential Election

Some in the Republican Party are concerned that if immigration reform does not pass in 2014 that their chances of capturing the White House in 2016 get considerably smaller. In 2012, President Obama carried the Hispanic American vote by 72% and Hispanics are one of the fastest-growing segments of the electorate.

Immigration Reform Depends on Internal Republican Party Struggle

So whether there is any chance of immigration reform passing in 2014 depends largely on the internal battle in the Republican Party between the Tea Party elements and the party’s more moderate elements. As of now, the Tea Party elements seem to have the upper hand.

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