Remember when Representative Joe Heck (R-NV Tea Party) was attempting to take a ‘middle ground’ on comprehensive immigration policy reform in July 2013? Or, perhaps it might be more accurate to say Rep. Heck was talking about taking a middle ground position on the issue? [WaPo] By December 2013 Rep. Heck was ‘shopping a bill’ in the House of Representatives to stop the deportation of young people whose parents had brought them into the country, and to provide a ‘path to citizenship’ for them. [LVRJ] This, by the way, isn’t comprehensive immigration policy reform — it’s simply one small part of the total picture. At any rate, Heck’s bill was going nowhere for lack of ‘key support.’ [LVSun] The lack of support attributable in part to the narrow nature of Heck’s efforts.
During the April 2014 deliberations on comprehensive immigration policy reform, Democrats attempted to get a discharge petition filled to force the comprehensive bill to the floor. However, Representatives Heck and Amodei both found reasons not to support that effort. Amodei believed the House bill was too much like the Senate compromise version, and Heck thought the discharge petition was a parliamentary gimmick. [RGJ] Heck’s argument sounds a little thin, especially since it was House Republicans who sponsored a discharge petition in favor of the American Energy Act back in August 2008. [TWS]
Protesters at Heck’s office notwithstanding [KTVN], the Republican strategy on comprehensive immigration policy reform is still piece meal consideration of policy elements with no over-arching reform bill being acceptable. The Republican leadership in the House recently voted to block the inclusion of the ENLIST bill into the National Defense Authorization Act, [Time] and now House Speaker John Boehner is suggesting he might bring up the measure as a stand alone bill. [Politico] However, a person might not want to get too enthusiastic about the prospects of the bill — Speaker Boehner has made other comments suggesting piecemeal votes, which have come to naught.
For all of the Speaker’s teasing on the matter, the likelihood of any immigration policy reform bill — specific or comprehensive — coming to the floor of the House doesn’t appear to be a solid bet.
The Republicans believe the Hispanic vote will not be a major factor in the 2014 mid term elections. [Reuters]
This school of thought is supported by Pew Research studies which indicate “Hispanic Voters Punch Below Their Weight in Midterm Elections.”
If, indeed, Hispanic voters do not turn out during the midterm election, then the projected 48.6% white voter turn out could be decisive. However, these may not be the only numbers which are germane to the current political issues.
Politico’s polling indicates strong support for immigration policy reform across a broader spectrum of opinion than the headlines (and Congressional commentary) might suggest.
Seventy-one percent of likely voters surveyed — and nine of 10 Hispanics — said they back sweeping change to immigration laws. The support spans party lines: 64 percent of Republican respondents back comprehensive immigration reform, as do 78 percent of Democrats and 71 percent of independents. [Politico]