Saturday, June 29, 2013

When it comes to immigration “reform,” the real politicking in Congress begins now!

I didn’t feel compelled to acknowledge the approval by the U.S. Senate of an immigration reform measure when it occurred earlier this week because I didn’t consider the vote to be all that significant.

The real news would have been if the Senate had turned out to be so politically inept (which is always a possibility) that they had been unable to get a bill through the legislative process in that chamber.

BUT THEY MANAGED to gain approval, with 68 of the 100 senators ultimately putting themselves on the record as backing the idea of creating ways for people now living in this country without a valid visa to gain it and stay here openly.

Although I’m sure for some, they want to spin this as voting in favor of more money wasted on construction of a wall along the U.S./Mexico border – ensuring that rattlesnakes now living on the Mexican side of the border will stay there!

Regardless, the measure now advances through the legislative process. It now goes to the U.S. House of Representatives – which is where the real challenge lies.

Because that is the chamber where the conservative ideologues who want to thwart this process actually have influence. We’re going to see just how hard-core their opposition truly is.

WILL THEY VOTE “no” automatically? Or will they try to concoct something so convoluted that it is destined to fail? Which would mean that nothing worthwhile ultimately goes to President Barack Obama for his signature into law!

I’m going to take it as something of a hint in terms of how long the process is dragged out.

Supposedly, the Republican leadership of the House will have a meeting with their members when Congress returns to Washington, D.C., in the days following the Independence Day holiday break.

Meaning that a hard-core element of the caucus – feeling refreshed by being surrounded by lots of people chanting “U.S.A.” out of a misguided belief of what this nation’s ideals truly are – could feel pumped up enough to want to do nothing!

AND EXPECT THE entire nation to like it that way!

The Associated Press reported recently how House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, said a final vote on the issue could actually come by month’s end. Although Rep. Tom Cole, R-Okla., told the wire service how it could be early next year before we find out what the final result on this bill will be.

The longer this draws out, the more likely it is we’ll get nothing.

We’re going to have to see just how much the measures backed earlier this year by the House’s judiciary committee – ones that call for more deportations and others that want to use the non-visa’ed as guest farm workers without giving them any long-term benefit – will guide the House direction on this issue.

WILL WE GET that Republican majority with enough members expressing common sense to realize how hateful and out-of-touch such policies make them seem to be?

Because it is safe to say that a majority of the Republican majority ultimately will cast “no” votes – if a final vote ever comes to be.

This is going to be a measure where a segment of the GOP is going to break off and side with a majority of Democrats to create a majority of the overall House of Representatives.

Unless (and this is a very real option) the House Republican caucus winds up sticking together out of a sense of political unity. Meaning that nothing will happen on this issue; except that we will have yet another campaign issue to argue about come the 2014 election cycle.


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