July 1st, 2010
11:30 AM ET
4 years ago

Sources: Immigration reform chances slim this year

Despite President Obama's push, congressional sources tell CNN that there is virtually no chance of Congress taking up comprehensive immigration reform before November's midterm elections.
Despite President Obama's push, congressional sources tell CNN that there is virtually no chance of Congress taking up comprehensive immigration reform before November's midterm elections.

Washington (CNN) - Several senior Democratic sources tell CNN Thursday that they still see virtually no chance of Congress taking up comprehensive immigration reform before November's midterm elections.

Their comments come as President Barack Obama gives a major address on fixing the nation's immigration system through comprehensive reform.

Though some hold out hope for some potential movement during a lame duck session of Congress after the election, most sources say the more realistic earliest target is next year. But even that, according to one source, may be "happy talk."

Still, these sources say politically it's crucial for the president to give a speech like he is today in order to put pressure on Republicans, and more importantly to reassure angry Latino voters that Democrats haven't forgotten about this issue.

Democrats on the ballot this year are well aware that they are the ones likely to be hurt by anger among Latino voters for not moving on immigration legislation, as Obama promised as a candidate for president in the 2008 campaign.

There is some quiet talk about trying to figure out how to move pieces of immigration reform, like the Dream Act, but there may not even be votes for that. That bill would provide certain illegal alien students who graduate from U.S. high schools the opportunity to earn conditional permanent residency.

A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation national poll conducted in late May indicated that public support for beefing up security along the U.S. border with Mexico had grown significantly. According to the survey, nearly nine out of ten Americans want to beef up U.S. law enforcement along the border with Mexico.

Eight in ten questioned also supported a program that would allow illegal immigrants already in the U.S. to stay here and apply for legal residency if they had a job and paid back taxes. But only 38 percent say that program should be a higher priority than border security and other get-tough proposals. Six in ten said border security was a the higher priority.

-CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report


Filed under: Congress • Immigration • issues • President Obama
soundoff (49 Responses)
  1. diridi

    because GOP is thugs...and nasty SOBs.....ok...they need to pass immigration reform....energy and climate reform and financial reform...dems...go and pass....just like you passed health care reform...good lucks, god bless.....my vote for you....John Boener does not have a brain at all....

    July 1, 2010 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  2. JES

    Forget about reform just enforce what we have.

    July 1, 2010 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  3. Sheena - Canada

    here we go again – like ALL the problems started 18 months ago – and ALL are a result of President Obama being in office – yup – no problems before – not even a hint – but financial institutions were giving NINJA loans and mortgages years before the President took office – and oil companies (and the people of the gulf coast) were engaged in offshore drilling – and STILL want to be – years before the President took office – and the country was engaged in TWO wars – costing billions long before the President took office
    But hey – keep beating that drum!!

    IDIOTS

    July 1, 2010 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  4. Leon J. Swartzentruber

    This article, written by Charlie Reese a former columnist of the Orlando Sentinel Newspaper, it says it all.

    Politicians are the only people in the world who create problems and
    then campaign against them.

    Have you ever wondered why, if both the Democrats and the Republicans
    are against deficits, we have deficits?

    Have you ever wondered why, if all the politicians are against
    inflation and high taxes, we have inflation and high taxes?

    You and I don't propose a federal budget. The president does.

    You and I don't have the Constitutional authority to vote on
    appropriations. The House of Representatives does. You and I don't write the tax code, Congress does.

    You and I don't set fiscal policy, Congress does.

    You and I don't control monetary policy, the Federal Reserve Bank does.

    One hundred senators, 435 congressmen, one president, and nine Supreme
    Court justices 545 human beings out of the 300 million are directly,
    legally, morally, and individually responsible for the domestic
    problems that plague this country.

    I excluded the members of the Federal Reserve Board because that
    problem was created by the Congress. In 1913, Congress delegated its
    Constitutional duty to provide a sound currency to a federally
    chartered, but private, central bank.

    I excluded all the special interests and lobbyists for a sound reason.

    They have no legal authority. They have no ability to coerce a senator, a congressman, or a president to do one cotton-picking thing.

    I don't care if they offer a politician $1 million dollars in cash.

    The politician has the power to accept or reject it. No matter what the lobbyist promises, it is the legislator's responsibility to determine how he votes.

    Those 545 human beings spend much of their energy convincing you that
    what they did is not their fault. They cooperate in this common con
    regardless of party.

    What separates a politician from a normal human being is an excessive
    amount of gall. No normal human being would have the gall of a Speaker, who stood up and criticized the President for creating deficits. The president can only propose a budget. He cannot force the Congress to accept it.

    The Constitution, which is the supreme law of the land, gives sole
    responsibility to the House of Representatives for originating and
    approving appropriations and taxes. Who is the speaker of the House?

    She is the leader of the majority party. She and fellow House members,
    not the president, can approve any budget they want. If the president
    vetoes it, they can pass it over his veto if they agree to.

    It seems inconceivable to me that a nation of 300 million can not
    replace 545 people who stand convicted - by present facts - of
    incompetence and irresponsibility. I can't think of a single domestic
    problem that is not traceable directly to those 545 people. When you
    fully grasp the plain truth that 545 people exercise the power of the
    federal government, then it must follow that what exists is what they
    want to exist.

    If the tax code is unfair, it's because they want it unfair.

    If the budget is in the red, it's because they want it in the red.

    If the Marines are in IRAQ , it's because they want them in IRAQ .

    If they do not receive social security but are on an elite retirement
    plan not available to the people, it's because they want it that way.

    There are no insoluble government problems.

    Do not let these 545 people shift the blame to bureaucrats, whom they
    hire and whose jobs they can abolish; to lobbyists, whose gifts and
    advice they can reject; to regulators, to whom they give the power to
    regulate and from whom they can take this power. Above all, do not let them con you into the belief that there exists disembodied mystical
    forces like "the economy," "inflation," or "politics" that prevent them
    from doing what they take an oath to do. Those 545 people, and they alone, are responsible.

    They, and they alone, have the power.

    They, and they alone, should be held accountable by the people who are
    their bosses provided the voters have the gumption to manage their own employees.

    We should vote all of them out of office and clean up their mess!

    What you do with this article now that you have read it is up to you,
    though you appear to have several choices.

    1. You can send this to everyone in your address book, and hope they do something about it.

    2. You can agree to vote against everyone that is currently in office,
    knowing that the process will take several years.

    3. You can decide to run for office yourself and agree to do the job
    properly.

    4. Lastly, you can sit back and do nothing, or re-elect the current
    bunch.

    July 1, 2010 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  5. American

    I think we are asking too much and expecting the president to fix everything according to our schedulas. I didnt vote for him but he is doing a herculean job so far. If we simply make it hard to work and get around here these illegal will simply self deport along with thier children. After all they come here to work. Impose really high fines on business who hire illegals knowingly or shut them down. States can help by preventing them from getting or renewing thier licenses without legal status and prevent them from renting unless they are legal, other countries do this and no worries. This way you are saying in america follow our laws and it makes it easier for immigration reform because you are already limiting who gets it because most will have to go home if thier are no jobs and no place to stay. Result jobs for american, crime goes down, accountability goes up, reform easier to pass constitution in place, and border control goes up. The pres. et al. can take theiir time getting reform past for early next year, states help by imposing thier own laws and federal laws can be informeced by the federal government. Biometrics can start to be put in place and american can start getting secure.

    July 1, 2010 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  6. AEK

    See obnoxious comments from the governor of Arizona and her friends on the Ticker today. Hypocrites all!

    July 1, 2010 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  7. truth

    Obama does everything just for his re-election. He has no care for this country. When those illegal become legal, they will be qualify for the benefit and 'free' medical care. This country is already in deep debt. Obama is going to either bankrupt the country or force more tax on us.

    July 1, 2010 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  8. barbara

    every business in this country (that hires illegal immigrants) needs to be fined such a huge amount for each illegal hire that they will have no choice but to fire the worker or go out of business. The worker is then left to pick up and go home (where ever that may be) . Once home, the worker can get in line like the rest of those around the world you have been waiting for the opportunity to become a fully fledged citizen. These people TAKE more than what they GIVE in this nation. I see it all the time,...workers cashing checks at the grocery store and then wiring home most of their money. They dont spend it here (which helps the economy) and, often this money is "under the table" meaning they can claim welfare benefits because they have no income to prove. Taking from this nation and not giving back is driving this country over the edge. This problem has to be fixed asap.

    July 1, 2010 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  9. Jasz

    I dont understand why there so much debate about immigration reform.

    ILLEGAL IS ILLEGAL PERIOD. I

    understand that people sneak into the US the work and provide for their family. I get that. But I cant sneak into your house wihile you are at work and take your food just because my kids are starving. Just because my intentions were honorable doenst mean my actions are justified. Illegal acts have to carry a penalty no matter the intentions otherwise Justice is not Blind or Fair!!!

    July 1, 2010 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  10. Larry

    This has become such a joke.

    The Republicans are filibustering every bill that comes to the Senate floor.

    You know, the same Republican Party that is screaming in Arizona for immigration reform.

    July 1, 2010 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  11. Ronald Reagan

    "The Simple truth is that we've lost control of our own borders, and no nation can do that and survive"
    Ronald Reagan

    July 1, 2010 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  12. Greg Pottstown PA

    Several senior Democratic sources tell CNN Thursday that they still see virtually no chance of Congress taking up comprehensive immigration reform before November's midterm elections.____________________________

    That's because they want to get reelected.

    July 1, 2010 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  13. Ronald Reagan

    Who is right? Arizona or Obama

    July 1, 2010 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  14. Greg Pottstown PA

    alam July 1st, 2010 12:04 pm ET

    I'm graduated from the US with a master's degree in Computer Science and then came back to my country after my education was completed. One IT company in the US applied for me a HI visa as a Computer Scientist to come and work for that company. It was 2007 May, now it's 2010 still no decision from US Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS). the decision should be made within 3 months while I'm waiting for 3 years. This is how US beaurucracy works in the USCIS. Some people just break the law and cross the border illegally and politicians want to give them citizenship just because it involves Latino votes. None talk for me although I'm doing everything legally and could benefit the US greatly with my American Computer Science degree. Where is fairness and justice?
    @@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

    That sucks!!! As an American I think We should deport all Illegals and replace them with people like yourself. My hat is off to you sir.

    July 1, 2010 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  15. Barack.Hussein.Obama-America's-Benevolent-DICTATOR

    What a JOKE. Obozo just trying to ignite the Latinos for the November elections. Also doesn't hurt to try and get all of his other FAILURES off the front pages by picking another fight.

    Anybody that voted for this buffoon should have their head examned!

    July 1, 2010 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  16. Nadeem

    From what i read hear – there is no pressure from the right to try and fix this. No wonder nothing gets done.

    July 1, 2010 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  17. Orlon

    One must remember: Brewer is a NON-ELECTED governor and is seeking her first term as an ELECTED governor. This state is screwed anyway...300,000 taken off Medicaid because the AZ Congressional Delegation...yes Kyle and McCain, voted to cut these funds....what are the kids going do? Same thing the unemployed will do when they can't feed their families...either resort to crime or suck rocks. Thank God McCain was not elected President (we prefer smart people). Unemployment would be 25%, breadlines would wrap around the state capital, and immigration would be the least of our problems. Remember the immigration bill McShame and Kennedy worked on? McShame voted again his own bill. He voted against the GI-Bill, VA hospital budget, and numerous other military programs, yet he wants the VETS to vote for him again...I think not.

    July 1, 2010 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  18. azmary

    I have lived in Arizona for 5+ years and the only person I have met that admitted he is here illegally, is a Canadian. The Canadian told me he had never been confronted about his status. However, he has blue eyes and light brown hair, and speaks an American-like form of English, so I guess he is going to be o.k. It is a bit hard to convince people that Arizona is serious about rounding up illegals without profiling, and in the next breath, all we hear about is the border with Mexico.

    July 1, 2010 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  19. Sniffit

    "Democrats on the ballot this year are well aware that they are the ones likely to be hurt by anger among Latino voters for not moving on immigration legislation, as Obama promised as a candidate for president in the 2008 campaign."

    Well, now everyone knows why the GOP doesn't want it dealt with and will obstruct it as much as possible: they think angry Latino voters + blaming the Dems for poor border security and nothing being done = political capital for the GOP.

    July 1, 2010 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  20. Naqib

    Nice...
    Need to wait until after Novemeber... the Dems need those illegal votes... ACORN's gonna be busy this fall

    July 1, 2010 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  21. Rodney Cruz from Texas

    What part of comprehenshive immigration reform as the only sensible and practical solution to the social and economical problem that 12 million of undocumented represent some don't understand? sorry, forgot we are trying to reason with some prejudiced people to whom reason sometimes don't apply.

    July 1, 2010 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  22. Darth Vadik, CA

    You can't "secure the border", people will find a way to get in anyway, so the argument is a stupid red herring argument for the crazy white folks.

    You really cant stop this, so I suggest that we build several underground tunnels from our Mexican border to the Canadian border. We fill it up with buses, rest stops, refreshment centers, and help our fellow humans form the south make their way into the vast and apparently booming Canada.

    July 1, 2010 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  23. Matt

    AZ passed the first step in illegal immigration reform. We need to:
    1) Secure the borders (military sweeps in dangerous areas)
    2) Prosecute those that break the law (illegal immigrants and those that hire them
    3) Close the loophole that allows non-citzens that are born in the US to become instant citizens (the law was written to protect ex-slaves...)
    4) Americans need to stop using illegal drugs

    There is no instant fix. So reform can systematically be put in place.

    July 1, 2010 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  24. Legal

    Too bad for the Dems.

    Not only will they not have 10 million extra votors for November elections. Once the Conservatives sweep both houses they won't have them for the 2012 elections either.

    July 1, 2010 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
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