House GOP to offer immigration reform; legalization with no path to citizenship

GOP Reps. John Boehner, Paul Ryan / Photo credit: Pat Dollard

Seven months after the U.S. Senate passed a comprehensive immigration reform package, House Republicans are expected to announce their own version, but with one notable difference — no citizenship for illegals, ever.

GOP leaders will reveal their proposal this week at their annual retreat in Cambridge, Md., The one-page outline will call for enhanced border security and increased immigration enforcement. It would also provide a means for the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants already in the United States to attain some legal status over time — bot not citizenship, according to The New York Times.

With an economy in the doldrums, high unemployment and a shaky rollout of the Affordable Care Act’s insurance exchange, President Obama is looking to immigration reform as something he can put into his “plus column.” But it falls short of what he was seeking.

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“The principles they lay out I’m sure won’t satisfy everybody,” former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Friday, The Times reported. But, “if we can make some compromises here for the good of the country, I think we have a very good chance for the first time in a long time of changing something that is really damaging all of us.”

The Times reported:

But heading into the three-day Republican retreat, even some of the most ardent conservatives say consensus is forming around an immigration package that would include several separate bills on border security; a clampdown against the hiring of undocumented workers; expanded guest-worker programs; a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants brought to the country as children; and a path to legal status for undocumented workers with family ties to citizens or employer sponsors.

The president, who is expected to bring up immigration reform in his State of the Union Address Tuesday, is looking for a “pathway to citizenship” for undocumented immigrants.

“The president’s pathway to citizenship is a stumbling block,” conservative Rep. Andy Harris, R-Md., said. “But legalization with no path to citizenship can gain some votes.”

H/T Pat Dollard


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