House Speaker John Boehner says the House will not automatically "take up and accept" the bipartisan immigration bill moving toward a vote on the Senate floor next month.
"The House remains committed to fixing our broken immigration system, but we will not simply take up and accept the bill that is emerging in the Senate if it passes," Boehner said in a statement Thursday along with other GOP leaders.
The statement continued, "Rather, through regular order, the House will work its will and produce its own legislation."
The statement signaled the likelihood that a final immigration overhaul bill would have to be hammered out in a conference committee between the two chambers.
A bipartisan group of House negotiators has been working on an immigration deal for four years, and members say it will be more conservative than the Senate bill, reports The Hill
Following a closed-door meeting Thursday, the group reported making progress on the final sticking point of healthcare for illegal immigrants, although it has not yet finalized an agreement.
"I'm very hopeful," Idaho Republican Paul Labrador told reporters.
The House declaration came two days after the Senate Judiciary Committee approved an immigration bill drafted by a bipartisan group of eight senators equally divided between Republicans and Democrats.
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