Valerie Jarrett, senior adviser to President Barack Obama, says GOP House Speaker John Boehner has committed to green light comprehensive immigration reform, but not until after the summer’s primary elections are over, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.
Jarrett made the remarks at the SkyBridge Alternatives Conference in Las Vegas, an annual gathering of hedge fund managers, executives and political leaders.
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Jarrett said Boehner has voiced his support despite a vocal GOP caucus, particularly members aligned with the tea party, determined to oppose it. He may opt for multiple bills rather than a single, omnibus bill, Jarrett said, adding that the White House would be fine with either approach. Jarrett characterized Boehner as expressing that he’s "very frustrated with his caucus."
"There’s a lot of ways to skin a cat," Jarrett said, according to the Review-Journal. "I feel very encouraged about immigration reform. I think you’re going to see mounting pressure."
The New York Times
reported in late April that Boehner indicated the possibility of passing immigration reform in the House, but cautioned that Obama must work to win back the trust of a leery Congress and American public.
"The biggest impediment we have in moving immigration reform is that the American people don’t trust the president to enforce or implement the law that we may or may not pass," Boehner said at the time.
The Senate, controlled by Democrats, has already passed an immigration reform bill that provides a pathway to citizenship for the 11 million people already in the country illegally.
Jarrett told the Las Vegas crowd that immigration reform could benefit the economy by $1.4 trillion over 20 years and that the American people, along with law enforcement, faith-based organizations and the technology industry, all favor comprehensive reform which would help secure jobs for both highly educated workers as well low-wage agricultural ones, according to the Review-Journal.
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