GOP House Members Opposed to Senate Amnesty Bill
“Opening the special, closed-door conference meeting, Speaker John Boehner told Republicans to look him in the eye as he said it one more time: We are not going to take up the Senate bill, and before we take up a vote on any bill or conference report on immigration, we will follow the Hastert Rule: A majority of the majority would be required on any bill or conference report on immigration. But he was just as adamant in the other direction, too. Doing nothing would leave us vulnerable to a giant attack, he told GOP lawmakers, adding that leaving the system broken would mean not doing everything we can to help the economy,” says Johnathan Strong at National Review.
National Journal said the meeting “underwhelmed” members. “No fireworks erupted in the closed-door session, which Rep. Martha Roby of Alabama described as a ‘happy family discussion.’ Conservatives received the reassurances they had sought heading into the meeting. On the policy side, GOP members reached overwhelming consensus that border security should and will be the House’s top legislative priority. And on the process side, they reached broad agreement that they won’t rush to pass immigration law and they will act incrementally. But as far as settling the specifics of how and when to pass immigration legislation, lawmakers seemed to leave the meeting with as many questions as when they entered.
The Examiner says that the House may vote on border security measures in July. “House Republicans are unlikely to move on immigration reform legislation before they depart Washington at the end of July for a month-long summer recess, members said Wednesday as they emerged from a private meeting on the issue. The House could vote before the August recess on legislation limited to border security, a Republican priority, but there is no specific timeline for legislative action on broader immigration-reform measures.”
Sen. Sessions – How the GOP Can Turn Immigration Debate Around
“The White House and their congressional allies believe that the Senate immigration bill can be used as a political cudgel against House Republicans. They are wrong. If Republicans do the right thing, they will not only turn the immigration debate on its head but will begin the essential drive to regain the trust of working Americans. We already know that the public repudiates the Gang of Eight’s amnesty-first model by a 4–1 margin. Less discussed is the public’s broad opposition to the large increases in low-skill immigration — and its impact on jobs and wages — that lies at the heart of the Senate proposal,” says Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL).
“In their zeal to rush this 1,200-page train wreck through the Senate with as many votes as possible, Democrat leadership whipped every single member of their conference. After over four years of the Obama presidency, wages have continued their painful decline. But the same Democrat senators who attacked President Bush for declining wages have suddenly fallen silent.”
House Member Says Senate Amnesty Bill Unconstitutional for Raising Revenue
“Rep. Dave Camp (R-MI), the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, tweeted Wednesday evening that the Senate’s immigration bill is unconstitutional because it raises revenues and originated in the Senate instead of the House. ‘Chairman Camp: Senate immigration bill a revenue bill; unconstitutional and cannot be taken up by the House,’ the official House and Ways Means Committee Twitter account sent out Wednesday evening,” Breitbart News reports.
“As of this writing, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has not sent the immigration bill that passed the Senate 68-32 to the House of Representatives. Rep. Steve Stockman (R-TX) announced that news in a late Wednesday statement, after circulating a ‘dear colleague’ letter arguing the Senate immigration bill was unconstitutional because it raised revenue and did not originate in the House.”
Bush’s Amnesty Speech Has Low Impact
“Former president George W. Bush, who enjoyed healthy support among Latinos during his time in office, has broken a virtual five-year silence in national politics by calling on fellow Republicans to embrace immigration reform at a time when conservatives are rebelling against the idea. The question is: Is anyone listening? Judging from the immigration debate now roiling the House, probably not. Although Bush’s public approval ratings are on the rise, he is a fast-fading memory on Capitol Hill, where more than half of the 234 House Republicans arrived on the scene after he departed,” the Washington Post reports.