Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) has a pretty good idea of what immigration reform in the House is going to look like. He just doesn’t know when it’s going to happen.
Let me beat this drum one more time, because I think this is the strategy we are going to see Boehner roll out as soon as the primaries are safely in the can.
The GOP leadership knows it’s between a rock and a hard place. It’s big-money backers was illegals legalized, and they want that now. The conservative base recoils in horror at the scamnesty the moneybags are demanding, and promise to punish GOP candidates who vote for such a deal.
What to do? How to give both sides what they want?
Easy. Simple. Arrange for the Democrats to pass scamnesty late this summer, with a little support from safe-seat Republicans – just enough to get the bill to Obama’s desk.
The big donors will get what they want: scamnesty. The Democrats will get what they want: scamnesty. And the Republicans will get what they want – no GOP congressman who would be even remotely damaged by voting for scamnesty will need to vote for scamnesty.
So Marco Rubio will be able to campaign against scamnesty, trumpeting that he would never have supported the bill and, in fact, did not vote for it. Problem solved for him, and he becomes viable at the national level again.
Ditto for every other GOP candidate running for federal office in 2016. Boehner will broker the deal, though he may not even end up voting for it. GOP politicians who would either be helped a bit, or at least not hurt by a vote for it will make up the margin of victory in the House and Senate.
And the Democrats will pick up 12-20 million new voters over the next ten years, while the GOP will maintain its second class entree to the great Boodle Trough that is Washington, D.C.
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