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Immigration Reform Could Shut Down Government

August 31, 2014
Plain English Version
House Republican Leadership: L. to R. Steve Scalise (LA) majority whip;    Kevin McCarthy (CA) majority leader; John Boehner (OH) speaker.

House Republican Leadership: L. to R. Steve Scalise (LA) majority whip;
Kevin McCarthy (CA) majority leader; John Boehner (OH) speaker.

President Obama has promised to reform immigration. He said he will do it himself if Congress does not pass a bill.

Republicans will block any bill that comes up for a vote. They vow that there will be no immigration reform act passed before the November elections.

The president said he would announce new rules by the end of the summer. Republicans said they would not allow funding for any change the president made on his own.

Some conservative Republicans simply oppose all immigration reform. They just want to secure the border.

They will use the budget to stop the president. It has to pass by the end of September. But Democrats will not pass any budget that cuts off funding. The result: without a budget, the government will shut down.

It is all about politics.

Who will the public blame if there is a government shutdown? Democrats are betting Republicans will be blamed. That is what happened the last time Republicans closed the government. A shutdown may help elect Democrats on Election Day.

Some reformers fear the president will get cold feet about imposing new rules. If he does, reform groups will be angry. Pro-reform voters might not vote on Election Day. If they do not vote, it will help Republicans.

New rules would make more people eligible for deferrals. It would be a bigger Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

There is a lot of hand wringing going on in congress and the white house. The stakes are high. Democrats are worried about losing their majority in the Senate. Experts believe the president will back down.

Tea party Republicans seem to be willing to do everything they can to oppose the president.

If the president does set new rules, watch out for a political circus.

Sources: The Washington Post August 28, 2014 and                                     The New York Times  August 28, 2014

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