House Speaker John Boehner told us all we need to know today about the chances of passing comprehensive immigration reform in the House of Representatives.
(CNN) — Under pressure from House conservatives opposed to comprehensive immigration reform, House Speaker John Boehner said Tuesday, “I don’t see any way of bringing an immigration bill to the floor that doesn’t have majority support of Republicans.” [...]
Boehner talked to reporters after the weekly GOP conference meeting on Capitol Hill. A source who attended Tuesday morning’s closed-door meeting said Boehner assured House members that he has no plan to pass an immigration bill without majority GOP support.
If Boehner will not pass an immigration reform bill with Democratic support, it means immigration reform will not pass.
House Republicans may pass their own reform bill, but several committee chairman have already indicated that they would only be open to passing piecemeal legislation, and any bill that is passed with conservative support and a minimal number of Democrats will likely be unacceptable to many senators including some Republican senators.
It’s hard to see a way out of this for the GOP that doesn’t leave them looking bad. Passing their own reform bill could actually be worse than not passing anything. Who knows what kind of nonsensical and discriminatory amendments House conservatives may propose? The sky is the limit.
It’s possible Boehner could go back on his word and ultimately pass a bill with Democratic support, but the resulting explosion of rhetoric from the far right won’t do the party any favors either.