Is There Any Hope For Immigration Reform On The Hill?

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J.M. Eddins Jr. / MCT / Getty Images

Marchers with the Fair Immigration Reform Movement and its Keeping Families Together: Youth in Action campaign march past the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., on, Nov. 14, 2013.

Former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg, former Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez, and the Republican governor of Michigan Rick Snyder are speaking at the National Press Club Friday to tout the economic case for passage of immigration reform. It’s the first in a series of exchanges coming this winter as the parties jockey for position on immigration ahead of the 2014 midterms. Speaker of the House John Boehner will announce broad Republican “principles” in the upcoming weeks. On Tuesday, the President will give his State of the Union with undocumented immigrants in the audience.

But while optimism is high—the President reportedly told Senate Democrats he expects the Republican-controlled House will pass “something”—experience suggests that, at most, only border security will see Congressional approval this year.

There are two reasons to think House Republicans won’t support a bill resolving the legal status of illegal immigrants in 2014, despite the fact that they pledged to “embrace and champion comprehensive immigration reform” after their 2012 presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, lost the Hispanic demographic two to one.

First, House Republicans don’t need to tackle the hard issues of immigration reform to keep the chamber. Democrats need to win 42 of 43 competitive races to take over the House, according to the Cook Political Report, and Republicans might even gain a few seats in the wake of the ObamaCare rollout fiasco. Next year, with no congressional election, could provide a better political environment for House Republicans.

The second reason is that the right wing of the House Republican conference has yet to embrace reform, and there is little indication that Speaker John Boehner will rebuff them as he has conservative outside groups. In fact, it is President Obama who has moved towards Republicans, accepting in November their “step-by-step” or “piecemeal” approach, on condition that all of the steps—border security, high-tech and agriculture worker visas, a path to legality, etc.—get done.

Republicans have not committed to such a compromise, and for now they’re avoiding the question. When asked if he supported a path to citizenship or legal status for illegal immigrants, Rep. Steve Scalise, the chairman of a broad conservative coalition, the Republican Study Committee, told TIME, “I support legislation that would finally secure our border… I think that was probably the biggest flaw of the Senate bill,” Scalise added. “It just assumes everybody wants to come here and get legal status to go and be a registered voter. And that’s just not the case.”

When pressed about what to do with the current 11 million illegal immigrants within America’s borders, Scalise advocated for reforming visa laws for both high-skilled and low-skilled workers. He said the current program “forces a lot of people to come here illegally, who would otherwise come here to work legally, and then go back home.” Addressing the visa system may be a way to strike a compromise, but previous attempts at the House have proven to be extremely partisan. Both agricultural and high-tech visa bills passed out of committee in 2013 failed to garner Democratic support.

Other House Republicans have advocated for a path to legal status for illegal immigrants, most recently the GOP whip, Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), who reaffirmed his support this week. Other members of the leadership agree, and Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) and House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) have taken the mantle on finding undocumented immigrants a path to legal status.

But several other Republicans who were initially involved in finding a solution, including Reps. Ted Poe (R-Texas), Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), and Raul Labrador (R-Ind.), have become embittered with the President and will remain hard pressed to come around.

27 comments
armandocdll81
armandocdll81

Is there any hope that foreign nationals who don't make the cut in our legal and very generous immigration system will desist from infiltrating and occupying our nation by illicit and fraudulent means? 

ClaudiaSplickLarson
ClaudiaSplickLarson

Look at the cost:

81% of illegals are Hispanic. $38,039 The median income of Hispanic households in 2009.

<http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/income_wealth/cb10-144.html>

The Congressional Budget office (CBO) estimates  

Household in the bottom quintile received $29,015 in benefits & paid $4,251 in Federal, state and local taxes. (Income $20,262 mean $11,239)


In the second quintile household received $24,709 in benefits & paid $9,524 in Federal, state and local taxes. (income top $38,520 mean $29,204 )

This means when legalized they will CONSUME  3-7 TIMES in Social Services (like WIC, TANF, SNAP, Welfare, Supplemental Housing, Disability), Medicaid, then they contributed in revenue. That is not fair to the US citizens who have paid taxes for 53 year

http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20130511222435AAUpJvQ

http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/income/data/historical/household/


1/2 the households are single parent. Welfare use by Immigrant Households with Children. States where the immigrant households with children have the highest use rates are Arizona (62%) Texas, California and New York (61%) each and Pennsylvania(59%).The study focused on eight major welfare programs that cost the government $517 billion the year they were examined.


http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2013/03/confirmed-majority-/of-illegal-immigrants-receive-government-welfareWel

Http://cis.org/immigrant-welfare-use-2011



CharlesEdwardBrown
CharlesEdwardBrown

NO AMNESTY and No legalization of illegal aliens in the United States. We need our immigration laws enforced and all 12 million illegal aliens should be deported. We have over 20 million Americans without jobs and millions of illegal aliens have stolen jobs from the poorest Americans. We need to pass a mandatory E-Verify and fire all illegal aliens from their current jobs.

lostintaxes
lostintaxes

Although promised in the 1986 amnesty for illegal aliens, the laws were never enforced. So strictly speaking Americans are taking a massive chance, trusting either side of the Congressional aisle in Washington. With over a 10 million Americans still seeking work and another 6 million either given up or not seeking a job, there should no thoughts of pressing for the objectionable Senate bill or the Republicans set of new policies. We certainly can do without another 30 million illiterate people; as many will end up on welfare. The only true Conservatives who will enforce immigration are the “Break-away” Peoples TEA PARTY dot org. The more Tea Party members elected into the Senate or house will decide a greater future. They will build the Real, two fences along the border and will implement E-Verify with no loopholes; prosecuting incorrigible employers who believe they are above the law. The Birthright Citizenship law will be presented for review by the highest court in the land, and foreign nationals entering through the borders, by aircraft as an ‘Overstay’ will be treated as a felony. Very few politicians deserve any reprieve from being thrown out of office, including Sen. Harry Reid and House Speaker John Boehner. The Tea Party has grown in mega-membership of Americans from every Race, religion and political relationship, who have been lied to, by arrogant and delusional bunch of narrow-minded people and have unceasingly ignored the will of the people.Fax for FREE Congress - Tell them to secure the borders first! http://petitions.conservativeactionalerts.com.

TerryT.Magyar
TerryT.Magyar

The most powerful supporter of CIR is the US Chamber of Commerce. They want an unlimited supply of cheap labor and couldn't care less about unemployed citizens. We need more E-Verify, more secure borders, expand Operation Streamline, and full implementation of the Secure Communities initiative.

armandocdll81
armandocdll81

There is much to be determined about what to do with the millions of foreign nationals who daily flout our immigration laws with smug impunity. Do we fine them each five thousand dollars? Ten thousand dollars? Do we offer legalization to aliens who stole social security numbers or otherwise engaged in some form of identity theft? Do previously repatriated foreign nationals get to come back? 


The Senate bill is laced with hundreds of loopholes and waivers that further undermine our nation's ability to regulate human traffic across its borders and are tantamount to amnesty. 


Until annual deportations are quadrupled and employers of illegal aliens are brought to heel there should be little discussion of legalization. 

ReneDemonteverde
ReneDemonteverde

In all the discussion and argument about Immigration Reform never heard anybody ask the question what about the high unemployment ? Dont citizens have the priority to have their needs taken first ? With the influx of cheap labor what will happen to those who are willing to work menial jobs as long as it help them tide over ? The youths which used to work in the service industry will be displaced and being idle would only result in more crimes. Only Democrats will benefit from these as it will create a huge political base for them. If implemented there would be more than the eleven million illegals that will accommodated. Wont be surprise if it would be double than that.

NinjaMonkey
NinjaMonkey

@CharlesEdwardBrown  We need immigration reform fix even if you don't like immigrants, it is not about what you want it is about what is good for our country. Tell all the 20 million Americans without jobs try little hard to look for job and good luck.

ImmigrationIsGoodForAll
ImmigrationIsGoodForAll

@TerryT.Magyar  

CIR calls for more E-Verify, more secure borders. "Unlimited supply of cheap labor" is just a rhetoric and an attempt to oversimplify the situation. The reform proposals have specific guidelines for different categories of labor force. 

rl00001
rl00001

@armandocdll81 So basically since you don't know the details of the law as yet no solution should be discussed?


Of course the house will have to work out these details in the bill before there we have a law.


But giving current illegals some form of legal status seems to be the right thing to do.  I don't necessarily agree with citizenship.  But if someone has been here for years and has kept their nose clean, it's in our best interest to identify and tax them, so they can work and travel.

narolez571
narolez571

@armandocdll81 I agree with your point but what about legal immigrants who are graduating with Masters and Phd degrees from American Universities? Is the government doing something to retain highly skilled labor in the states? Most of the highly skilled labor in the states comprises of foreign students. The visa and permanent residence process is so lengthy that by the time you get the green card your hair turns white....

rl00001
rl00001

@ReneDemonteverde Through the last few years running my company I haven't stopped getting unsolicited offers for jobs with six figure salaries.  I know most of my colleagues get those too.  


My point is that not every worker brings the same set of skills to the table.  Many unemployed workers do not want to work.  Even the ones that do, do not have to required skillset.


Illegals are here and most likely already working.  The idea is to let them CONTINUE working.  And to tax their income if we're not doing so already.

jason024
jason024

@ReneDemonteverdeDemocrats will benefit from these as it will create a huge political base for them. If implemented there would be more than the eleven million illegals that will accommodated.


-------------


Don't be so naive Rene....CEOs and businesses who support the GOP benefit the most. Even the Chamber of Commerce supports reform which would include some type of amnesty. 

Secondly are you suggesting we attempt to identify and deport 12 million people? The same Government that conservatives like you think is incapable of doing anything right and needs to be gutted? 


Are you also of the mind that we can actually lockdown the border and kindly ask everyone to leave?


armandocdll81
armandocdll81

@ReneDemonteverde I would add to the concern about unemployed Americans the very real dangers that rapid human population expansion presents to our environment (open land, water and food supplies, breathable air, etc.)  Immigration is one of the biggest drivers of unsustainable population growth in the United States.

ClaudiaSplickLarson
ClaudiaSplickLarson

@narolez571 @armandocdll81  

We don't need them Obviously, If skilled employees were in short supply, they would not be laid off. Moreover, if the skills were in short supply, salaries would be bid up, not down, and the 36% of those who graduated in 2011 with a doctorate degree in engineering would not have been left unemployed. The National Science Foundation’s report, “Doctorate Recipients From U.S. Universities,” says that only 64% of the Ph.D. engineering graduates found a pay check.  Thank you VISA program.


http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2013/05/28/h1b-visa-high-tech-workers-afl-cio-editorials-debates/2367769/

ReneDemonteverde
ReneDemonteverde

@narolez571@armandocdll81Most likely those legal immigrants you are talking about are from China and India sent here to avail  the superior technology this country has. And when they absorb everything will go back to their country of origin to help update their own. Just like Khan of Pakisthan. Studied nuclear science and went back to Pakisthan and help build their atom bomb. Rather why dont we encourage the young people here to strive higher ? Instead of the legalized marijuana, the drinking, the free sex and all those hedonistic ways so prevalent in colleges and universities. We cannot just keep on importing people from abroad to do the hard work for us.

armandocdll81
armandocdll81

@narolez571 @armandocdll81 I am in favor of retaining highly skilled immigrants as long as their status is lawful. Definitely. However, I am not in favor (at this point) of expanding annual  H1B visa allotments until the unemployment rate amongst our citizens is greatly reduced. 

JohnJBerry
JohnJBerry

@armandocdll81 @ReneDemonteverde Yes just add air and or water and the undocumented will suddenly appear....they are already here they are already are eating drinking breathing etc. The biggest drivers of unsustainable population growth in the United States is not Immigration but unplanned pregnancies.

armandocdll81
armandocdll81

@JohnJBerry @armandocdll81 @ReneDemonteverde Most immigrants - be they legal or illegal - possess fertility rates that exceed those of native-born American citizens. Yes, all unplanned pregnancies should be terminated but curtailing immigration will also greatly assist in stabilizing excess population growth and the expansion of poverty. 

ReneDemonteverde
ReneDemonteverde

@jmac @ReneDemonteverde @armandocdll81 You were funny before Jmac you are still funny now. Of course many Republicans with the urging of big businesses wants low salaried people to take place of the ones already here working. I was talking about political base. Try to differentiate the two. But there is an amnesty vast majority of those made legal will vote Democrats. It is the entitlements.

ReneDemonteverde
ReneDemonteverde

@JohnJBerry @ReneDemonteverde @armandocdll81 You know fully well that vast majority of those if amnestied would vote Democrat. What I fault the Republicans is the cheap labor. But that does not make them better than the other. The important thing is the country. Try to differentiate the two.

jmac
jmac

@ReneDemonteverde @armandocdll81 REne - it doesn't take a genius.  It is Republicans who want immigrants here.  It is the Chamber of Commerce (Republicans)  that insists our businesses would go belly up without them.   They have always wanted them here - and with no respect for their well-being.  If it helps business get cheap labor, they want them.   


You are an example of exactly the kind of Republican they go after - they know you'll never figure it out.   

JohnJBerry
JohnJBerry

@ReneDemonteverde @armandocdll81 Only Democrats? just back it up...how about a good percentage of Americans. Like some Republican Democrats Tea Party indies...agree that it is good....I can say that safely....but you cant say "all Because Democrats".