Obama’s Stance on Immigration is About the Elections, Not Policy

“President Obama called Thursday on the Republican-controlled House of Representatives to take up the comprehensive immigration bill passed by the Senate. “This is not an idea whose time has come,” Obama said, “This is an idea whose time has been around for years now. . . and this is the moment when we should be able to the job done.” The move is the latest in a pattern of efforts by Democrats to increase political pressure on Republicans, who have already ruled out the Senate bill, in the hopes of using the issue in the 2014 and 2016 elections,” says Zeke J. Miller at Time Magazine.

Arizona Gov. Brewer Says Obama Wrong on Amnesty Call

“A call Thursday by President Obama for the Republican-controlled House to approve immigration reform this year is getting a decidedly cool reception from Gov. Jan Brewer,” Capitol News Service writes.

“The American people, the public, the citizens, the people that are certainly affected on a daily basis by it, understand that we have an issue that we need to find a solution to,” she said.

“But it’s not going to be found until he realizes that our borders have got to be secured,” the governor said. “He needs to do it. It’s his job.’’

Rep. Gutierrez Sees Piecemeal Approach Working for Amnesty

“Look, when the ‘Gang of Eight’ failed in the House of Representatives, it should not have been a surprise. It was not fully supported by Republican leadership or Democratic leadership. It was a group of eight people…So in its demise, I mean we hear that [GOP House Judiciary Chair] Goodlatte has announced and made pronouncement that he will bring a bill, he will bring several bills. Now, the ones that have been produced thus far can’t get Democratic support, but they are all bills. The president, I am thankful, has been smart enough and politically strategic enough to understand that it’s OK if they do it – he said it’s OK you want to do it piecemeal, it’s OK as long as in the end we have a complete project,” said Rep. Luis Guteirrez in an interview with Salon.

Obama Speech May Rally Opposition to Amnesty

“After months of being relegated to the back of the legislative line, immigration reform is back in the spotlight. On Thursday, President Obama gave a speech urging the Republican-led House to move quickly to fix the nation’s dysfunctional immigration system,” the LA Times writes.

“But is Obama’s speech likely to help or hurt such efforts in the House? According to some GOP conservatives and tea party members, the more the president talks about the need to overhaul the immigration system, the dimmer the chances a compromise bill will be passed in the House.”

Report: GOP Unlikely to Follow Obama Directly

“Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) has repeatedly ruled out taking up the comprehensive Senate bill, and senior Republicans say it is unlikely that the party, bruised from its internal battle over the government shutdown, will pivot quickly to an issue that has long rankled conservatives,” The Hill reports.

“Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.), a leadership ally, told reporters Wednesday there is virtually no chance the party would take up immigration reform before the next round of budget and debt ceiling fights are settled. While that could happen by December if a budget conference committee strikes an agreement, that fight is more likely to drag well in 2014: the next deadline for lifting the debt ceiling, for example, is not until Feb. 7.”

The Big GOP Division on Immigration

“The conventional wisdom is that divisions within the Republican Party are about tactics, not goals. That is true of the shutdown over Obamacare. It is less true of divisions over immigration, which are about tactics but also policy. Tactically, pro-reform Republicans fear that the GOP will atrophy among minorities without it, while opponents worry about alienating core voters and adding millions of Democrats to the rolls,” says Breitbart news.

“The policy divide is even deeper. Big business wants the cheap labor that immigration reform could provide, as well as access to more high-skilled foreigners. Workers, however, fear new competition for jobs and for access to declining public services. There are a few odd coalitions: national security hawks, for example, largely support reform. But where economic interests are at stake, there may be little to bridge the divides.”