Boehner says no immigration deal until Obama enforces laws
House Speaker John A. Boehner said Thursday that until President Obama proves he’s serious about enforcing immigration laws, it will be difficult to get a bill through the House this year — dealing a potentially fatal blow to the chances for action in 2014.More:
“Listen, there’s widespread doubt about whether this administration can be trusted to enforce our laws. And it’s going to be difficult to move any immigration legislation until that changes,” the Ohio Republican told reporters at his weekly press conference.
That came exactly a week after Mr. Boehner had appeared to jump-start the debate by releasing principles for an immigration deal that included granting most illegal immigrants legal status and giving younger illegal immigrants a specific pathway to citizenship.
But this week, Mr. Boehner has seemed much less optimistic — and his fellow Republicans have been downright hostile to moving a bill. His Senate counterpart, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, said on Tuesday that a bill can’t get written this year, and some rank-and-file conservatives in the House have said Mr. Boehner is risking both the GOP’s election chances and his own position at the head of their conference if he moves ahead with a bill.
Mr. Boehner and fellow Republicans said Mr. Obama’s credibility on the immigration issue has suffered both because of his previous moves to change policy and stop many deportations under existing laws, and because of the tone of his State of the Union address last month, when the president said he would take even more unilateral actions.