Immigration Reform: Better Luck Next Year, We Hope22 Nov 2013
Just for the record: the House of Representatives has yet to gavel out for the holidays – that’s set for December 13th – but all signs are that any action on comprehensive immigration reform will have to wait until the second session of the 113th Congress, after the House convenes on January 7, 2014.
In mid-November, Speaker John Boehner ended speculation that the House might be willing to move forward with some kind of CIR legislation; he flatly ruled out the possibility of negotiating over the Senate CIR bill, the one that passed in June. In the unlikely event that Speaker Boehner could rally his caucus to vote on a series of piecemeal immigration measures before adjournment, the votes would almost certainly be symbolic, because there’s so little time remaining to hammer out a deal. The House of Representatives is on recess for the entire week of Thanksgiving, leaving eight legislative days in December, before the session ends – and leaving having added precious little to our country’s list of things for which we are thankful.
What happens next year is anyone’s guess, but one thing is certain: bipartisan cooperation likely will be even harder to come by in 2014. Midterm elections seem to induce a sort of Doppler Effect, making the tone of political debate ever more shrill as the election approaches. There may be more sound, fury, and fireworks next year, but as 2013 winds down, CIR is going out not with a bang, but a whimper.
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