House Speaker John Boehner said it would be difficult to pass an immigration bill because fellow Republicans don’t trust President Barack Obama to implement the law, a position that shrinks chances for House action this year.
“There’s widespread doubt about whether this administration can be trusted to enforce our laws,” Boehner told reporters in Washington today. “And it’s going to be difficult to move any immigration legislation until that changes.”
Boehner released a framework last week for immigration revisions that dropped a number of aspects of the bipartisan bill passed by the Senate last year.
Some House Republicans, including those who supported the Senate’s approach, resist moving immigration legislation that risks dividing the party and overshadowing their election-year message of curbing Obama’s health-care law.
Boehner said Obama could improve relations with the House by urging the Senate to pass a quartet of bills, including two that the president has said he’d veto. The bills would provide flexible hours to working parents, divert taxpayer funds now used for political conventions, provide job training and allow natural gas pipelines.
“The president is asking us to move one of the biggest bills of his presidency, and yet he’s shown very little willingness to work with us on the smallest of things,” Boehner said.
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