Speaker John Boehner is refusing to bring a comprehensive immigration bill to the House floor unless it has the support of a majority of Republicans.
Boehner, a Republican from Ohio, does not view immigration the same way he did the fiscal cliff last December, when he backed legislation that was supported by less than half of the GOP lawmakers, reports The Washington Examiner
"What the speaker wants to do is have a hopefully bipartisan product — certainly one that has the majority of Republicans — pass the House," GOP Rep. Tom Cole of Oklahoma told the newspaper. "This has got too much emotional, political impact and I think it really has to be genuinely bipartisan."
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The bipartisan Gang of Eight proposal that the Senate is currently debating
provides a pathway to citizenship for some of the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants already in the country. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is pushing for a final vote before the July 4 recess.
But one GOP strategist told the Examiner that Boehner is not facing any pressure to bring the Senate bill to the House floor, saying, "There is no national crisis with an artificial deadline the president can trump up and trot out on the nightly news."
Boehner is also aware of the potential backlash among Republican voters in the 2014 midterm elections if a bill passes that is unpopular with conservatives.
The House is drafting its own bipartisan plan and members are putting forward additional bills addressing various GOP concerns such as stricter border security and employment verification.
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