Paul Ryan: Immigration legislation unlikely in '14

GOP's conservative base opposes any measure that creates pathway to citizenship for immigrants living here illegally
Associated Press
Feb 3, 2014

Days after House Republicans unveiled a roadmap for an overhaul of the nation's broken immigration system, one of its backers said legislation is unlikely to pass during this election year.

Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., said distrust of President Barack Obama runs so deep in the Republican caucus that he's skeptical the GOP-led House would pass any immigration measure. He said a plan that puts security first could only pass if lawmakers believe the administration would enforce it — an unlikely prospect given Republicans' deep opposition to Obama.

"This isn't a trust-but-verify, this is a verify-then-trust approach," Ryan said.

Last week, House Republicans announced their broad concerns for any immigration overhaul but emphasized they would tackle the challenge bill-by-bill. Immigration legislation is a dicey political question for the GOP. The party's conservative base opposes any measure that would create a pathway to citizenship for immigrants living here illegally, but many in the party worry that failing to act could drive many voters to Democratic candidates. In 2012, Obama won re-election with the backing of 71 percent of Hispanic voters and 73 percent of Asian voters. The issue is important to both blocs.

Republicans have preemptively been trying to blame the White House for immigration legislation's failure, even before a House bill comes together. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor said "there's a lot of distrust of this administration in implanting the law." And Republican Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., last week warned that distrust of Obama would trump the desire to find a solution for the estimated 11 million people living in the United States illegally.

"We just don't think government will enforce the law anyway," Rubio said, recounting conversations he's had with fellow Republicans.

House Republicans are pushing a piecemeal approach to immigration that puts a priority on security before considering a pathway for those here illegally to earn citizenship. That strategy runs counter to a comprehensive bill, passed through the Senate seven months ago with bipartisan support, that includes a long and difficult pathway to citizenship.

The White House, meanwhile returned to its position that any legislation must include a way for those living here illegally to earn citizenship and that the system cannot divide Americans into two classes — citizens and noncitizens.

"We ought to see a pathway to citizenship for people," White House chief of staff Denis McDonough said Sunday. "We don't want to have a permanent separation of classes or two permanent different classes of Americans in this country."

Last week, Obama suggested that he's open to a legal status for immigration that falls short of citizenship, hinting he could find common ground with House Republicans.

"I'm going to do everything I can in the coming months to see if we can get this over the finish line," Obama said Friday.

Obama's flexibility was a clear indication of the president's desire to secure an elusive legislative achievement before voters decide in the fall whether to hand him even more opposition in Congress. Republicans are expected to maintain their grip on the House and have a legitimate shot at grabbing the majority in the Senate.

McDonough said the White House remains optimistic that legislation that includes citizenship could reach the president's desk: "We feel pretty good that we'll get a bill done this year."

Not so, countered Ryan, the GOP's vice presidential nominee in 2012.

"Here's the issue that all Republicans agree on: We don't trust the president to enforce the law," he added.

Asked whether immigration legislation would make its way to Obama for him to sign into law, Ryan said he was skeptical: "I really don't know the answer to that question. That is clearly in doubt."

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, a Republican and son of immigrants, said Congress needs to address the "completely backwards system" not because it's good politics for the GOP but because it's the right thing to do.

"If the president had been serious about this the last five years, we'd be further along in this discussion," Jindal said. "But I think it's also right the American people are skeptical."

Ryan spoke to ABC's "This Week." Cantor was interviewed on CBS' "Face the Nation." McDonough appeared on NBC's "Meet the Press" and CBS. Jindal spoke to CNN's "State of the Union."




And....once again the GOP strives to alienate people they need to attract in order to have even a fighting chance in 2016. Once again, it's not about doing what is right, it's about opposing everything and anything Obama proposes.

Makes me chuckle to hear Ryan try to blame Obama because something didn't get done, considering their stance for the past five years has been to stick a hand in his face and say no. "Do Nothing Congress", indeed.

Anybody paying attention knows the REAL reason the GOP doesn't want anything to get done with immigration before 2016: they know that the vast majority of immigrants granted amnesty will vote Democrat, due to the appalling anti-immigrant stance of the Republican Party.

In effect, they have chosen to make sure nothing gets done, instead of revising their platform to an immigrant-friendly stance in which those new citizens might actually vote for their candidates. Nothing new here - this is a party who has always opposed equal treatment towards minorities. The funny thing is, their old, angry white base is gradually becoming a minority.

Democrats win presidential elections because we are inclusive - we accept and appreciate people of all race/color/creed. Republicans, generally speaking only know how to accept people who are like them. They profess to love America, but oddly, seem to hate all Americans who aren't exactly like them. Practically everything they do is an attempt to stop or deny someone else from getting things they enjoy themselves. Deplorable...

Darwin's choice

Watch this 60 second video of the reason there is a problem to start with!

What do you say about this know it all??

You two obamabots can BS all you want, obama is the problem.



The Big Dog's back

GOP, Grumpy Old (white) People.


Immigration reform is a red herring.

If the Dems REALLY cared, they could have passed legislation when they controlled the House and Senate.

But they didn't did they?

The Big Dog's back

No they couldn't. Stop pushing that lie.


Thank you, Big Dog. The Repubs like to push the myth that the Democrats held a filibuster proof majority for two years, but in actuality they only held it for six months. Those six months weren't in a row, either (two months in the summer of '09 and then four months in late fall and into Feb. of '10).


Re: "they only held it for six months."

Begs the question: So why didn't the Dems pass immigration reform?

H*ll, they pulled the ACA outa their *ss in hurry didn't they?


Re: "The Repubs like to push the myth that the Democrats held a filibuster proof majority for two years, but in actuality they only held it for six months. Those six months weren't in a row, either (two months in the summer of '09 and then four months in late fall and into Feb. of '10)."

Wrong again, but then I am used to having to point out facts about recent history to some of you on here. Paul Kirk was appointed Senator shortly after almost dead ted became finally dead ted. The office was unfilled for 1 month. end of August 09, to end of Sept 09.(search Paul Kirk and read his wiki, I won't bother to link to it)

Mostly dead ted could have resigned from office when it became obvious he would never return to the chamber and done away with all your handwringing about not having a 60 vote majority. If he had been more concerned about the country, mostly dead ted would have done so. You should blame finially dead ted for not doing the right thing. Mostly dead ted screwed the dims in the end again. They allowed him to drive the car across the bridge one last time, with similar results as the last time.


What lie? The fact is they could have did it but instead pushed a broken healthcare bill that panders to campaign donors. Admit it, Their priorities were, Force citizens to buy insurance from private sellers first, Everything else second.

The Big Dog's back

Normal people love the new healthcare plan vs the no healthcare plan pushed by CONservatives.


On the contrary, even the majority of the uninsured are against Obamacare. Why? Because, contrary to the official name of the law, it isn't affordable for a lot of people. Why isn't it affordable? Because insurers are required to provide a laundry list of "free" stuff, and SOMEbody has to pay for it, never mind the cost to us ALL of the subsidies!

I won't argue that healthcare needed reform. But if the Democrats and Republicans alike weren't hip deep in lawyers, we would have got some REAL change for the better, such as tort reform. And if the Democrats and Republicans alike weren't beholden to various and sundry lobbyists, I'd be willing to bet we'd get a lot more fraud prevention (and prosecution) handled as well.

This plan is taking the best healthcare in the world and destroying it. Did some aspects need fixing? Yes. Is the government fixing it? Nope. It's breaking it still more. And you'll note that it's the Democrats ALONE that are to blame for THAT much of the mess!

The Big Dog's back

Tort reform? Really? Are you serious? Less than 1% of costs attributive to health insurance. C'mon, you can do better than that.


would you please cite the source for your less than 1% figure ????


He read that in his See Dick Run books next to the toilet


bigdog Second request would you please cite your source for the less than 1% figure if you do have a source.


Re: "REAL change for the better, such as tort reform. "

Off the top of my head add in buying insurance across state lines.pooling high risk folks and subsidizing those folks, doing away with pre existing conditions, being able to only take those options you need ( if you don't need prenatial or mental health care you don't pay for it, and other things you don't need you don't pay for), I'll let others add onto those few and it would be a start. I would let those who have some knowledge about the subject chime in with their suggestions. (want to bet on who won't/can't come up with any suggestions?)


There are those who will claim that Obamacare DOES pool high risk folks (the pool's not going well, surprise, surprise), and that the healthcare exchanges DO facilitate buying insurance across state lines (in theory, increasing competitiveness). The crux, though, is found in the latter part of your list of suggestions: Take only those options you need. It's all of the "free" stuff that's pumping up the premiums so high, and they'd be even higher if it weren't for the new multi-thousand dollar deductibles.

I heard an interesting interview with a former state governor (a Democrat, though I don't think that makes a difference in the argument). He said that states didn't like the "selling across state lines" deal because their insurance commissions couldn't set minimum standards for the state's residents. I disagree that that's a necessity (that's one of the biggest problems with Obamacare), but I suspect it's a point a LOT of states would agree with!

Gallup poll says different than what your god has said, Guess you still trust him after all the lies. Normal people don't.


bigdog says : "Normal people love the new healthcare plan "

Seems there a lot of adnormal persons out there especally the ones that have had their policy cancelled, paying higher premims, awarded with higher deductables, will now have the opportunity to choose a new doctor after losing their privuous doctor not to mention at least 2 of the largest labor unions that feel betrayed by Obama.

Of course there is another bright side as Ms. Fluke will not have to purchase any birth control products as they will be free no deductible. I do pay a 30.00 dollar deductible for my Plavix of course I do realize the Plavix is only to help me sustain life and is not nearly as paramount as her sex life. My hearing aids cost me $3000 and insurance does not cover that either.

Darwin's choice

And there they are!!!

The experts have spoken!

Batfan and mini-he, the two biggest know it nots on the planet!

All it takes to strike fear into them is mention anything obama, or Sarah Palin, and into the frenzy they go!

Trolls, go peddle your crap elsewhere.



What lie is that? The Dems don't even trust that POS or POTUS as you call him.

The Big Dog's back

Yep, sh$t for brains bush was so much better.


I can agree with you on one thing. Bush was a failure as President. He is lucky that the loser currently in office will be remembered as a bigger failure.


Not a big fan of Bill O'Reilly, but if you haven't seen his interview with Pres. Obama, you need to:

Yea, the head of the IRS visited the WH 157 times and they NEVER once discussed how the ins. cos. were gonna get paid from a poorly designed website?

Nobody except the Obama admin. would be incompetent enough to launch a website without beta testing.

The Big Dog's back

Please, please watch the entire video and see billo get his arse handed to him. Hahahahahahahahhaha.

The Big Dog's back

And please, please keep up the hate towards Mexicans. Your base,grumpy old white people, is dying off.


Ignorant black man, 2 can play this game burger boy, Your not a good subliminal racist, try harder cupcake


Republicans, generally speaking only know how to accept people who are like them. They profess to love America, but oddly, seem to hate all Americans who aren't exactly like them. Practically everything they do is an attempt to stop or deny someone else from getting things they enjoy themselves. Deplorable... What part of the word Illegal do you not comprehend!!!!!!!! Coasterfan is so loony


Excuse me, wasn't Bush governor of Texas and then president when most of the illegals came in? And hasn't McCain been a senator from Arizona all these years? This problem was made by the GOP.