Reid: Boehner will compromise on immigration reform
December 21st, 2013
03:09 PM ET
12 months ago

Reid: Boehner will compromise on immigration reform

Washington (CNN) - He will cave.

Despite his public statements to the contrary, House Speaker John Boehner will meet with Senate leaders to negotiate comprehensive immigration reform in 2014 - at least, Harry Reid says he will.


In an interview with The Hill, the Senate Majority leader says he thinks the Speaker, emboldened against tea party groups, will take the issue up in conference with the Senate.

“I think that John Boehner will conference with the Senate. Why wouldn’t he? He’ll have a lot of pressure from his members now that the election is getting closer,” Reid said.

Reid, D-Nevada, argues that popular support for an immigration deal will push members of Boehner's caucus toward a deal. Boehner, who recently stood up to more conservative elements of his party in supporting the debt deal, will lead the way, according to Reid.

“Some of his members are in very marginal districts where they need to do something on immigration,” Reid said.

All signs from the Speaker's office, however, still say no. Like other Republicans, Boehner has said he favors a piece-by-piece approach.

"I'll make clear we have no intention ever of going to conference on the Senate bill," he said last month, adding, "I want us to deal with this issue, but I want to deal with it in a common-sense, step-by-step way."

The 1200-page Senate bill includes increased border security and patrolling, as well as a pathway to citizenship for millions of immigrants in the country illegally.

It is the latter element that has outraged conservatives. Many decried the move as "amnesty," with the backlash so strong that even Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida, who authored the Senate bill, moved to support the House's piecemeal approach.

"I think when you try to do anything big in Washington it ends up running into headwinds. Now that's the direction the Senate went. I wanted to influence that process so I got involved in it. But I continue to believe that a series of sequential individual bills is the best way, the ideal way, to reform our immigration system," said Rubio in an interview with CNN anchor Kate Bolduan.

But Reid believes the time is ripe for Boehner to stand up to the conservative elements of his party - and some of the Speaker's recent public statements have convinced Reid that Boehner is ready.

“I was very impressed with his saying, as far as I’m concerned, what was long overdue. The government shutdown, it was being driven by these people he criticized,” said Reid. Boehner accused grassroots conservative groups of "using our members and using the American people for their own goals" at a news conference on December 11.

“I think it’s a hopeful sign that that caucus is not going to be driven off a cliff as much as they were in the past,” Reid said.

Immigration reform has been a top priority of President Barack Obama's second-term agenda, and momentum appears to be growing as outside groups, including Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg, put pressure on Washington and polling shows continued support.

It remains to be seen what, if any, legislation will make it to the House floor next year, especially as 2014 will start with what looks to be another battle.

–CNN's Conor Finnegan contributed to this report.


Filed under: Harry Reid • Immigration • John Boehner
soundoff (110 Responses)
  1. Rick McDaniel

    That would be the worst possible thing he could do. Everyone in America would be demanding his immediate resignation.

    December 21, 2013 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  2. Mitch danials

    How do all you like having your country run buy a corrupt gov, –corp usa, –and illegals.

    December 21, 2013 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  3. Terry

    rt colorado, I Ive in Denver, a sanctuary city infested with illegals. You all legal or illegal do nothing but suck all beauty and joy out of every city you infest.

    December 21, 2013 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  4. blakenaustin

    Sadly Reid is correct. Reid will cave on anything to the far left. He is a very poor person representing the GOP. He has more in common with the Democrats than his own party. He needs to be ousted ASAP.

    December 21, 2013 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  5. ladies first

    Wishing all a safe entrance to the NEW YEAR!

    December 21, 2013 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  6. Donna

    Obama and the Democrats have already lied to the American people about "healthcare reform" that turned out to be more like healthcare destruction. Now a majority of Americans do not think Obama is honest or trustworthy. Why should we trust these proven liars and con artists when it comes to immigration "reform"?

    The fact is the ONLY "reform" we need is a purging of all politicians from Washington DC that refuse to enforce our current immigration laws, that refuse to deport illegals that they catch here, that refuse to secure our borders. Any new "reforms" will be equally unenforced. And the liberal/leftist/progressive/communist Democrats will STILL refuse to deport any illegals that come into this country after the big "reform". It will all be another giant FRAUD on the American people just like the previous amnesty and just like Obamacare.

    Just say NO America to another giant Democrat "reform" FRAUD.

    December 21, 2013 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  7. 老屄壳子闭嘴

    In this wonderful debt crisis, let pray for an invasion by Russia and China, to kill all these hopeless pigs and cult

    December 21, 2013 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  8. jeff

    There are more important issues on the table than immigration reform. Nothing is better than something from this crowd.

    December 21, 2013 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  9. joeintucker

    this libaturd got a face you'd love to punch!

    December 21, 2013 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  10. Liz the First

    Sad how republicans have to be ashamed of doing the right thing. speaks volumes about their party.

    December 21, 2013 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  11. Galactus

    NO AMNESTY and No Pathway to US Citizenship for any illegal aliens living in the United States. We need our immigration laws enforced and all illegal aliens should be deported.

    December 21, 2013 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  12. Thomas

    I love the weekends when the paid posters here are out doing coke .

    Read understands House Speaker John Boehner better then John Boehner understands himself.

    When is Ted Cruz going to read us How the Grinch stole Christmas ?

    December 21, 2013 09:53 pm at 9:53 pm |
  13. Mary

    So disgraceful – that our elected President and many members of the Senate and the congress put the welfare of people who have purposely broken into our country above the welfare of the many millions of US citizens without jobs or who are under/un employed. Time to represent US citizens! Time to secure the workplace with mandatory universal E-Verify to check all jobs, current and future. Time to start upholding the laws of the nation and time to stop pandering to cheap labor and Democratic party new voting bloc interests. I do hope all Americans will wake us and see how we are not represented anymore in Washington DC. Soon, before it is too late.

    December 21, 2013 10:30 pm at 10:30 pm |
  14. claudia gonzalez

    Hispanic and latinos should do something like "a day with out Mexicans "so that way this country will see that they need us that bad thing is they don't want to realize that

    December 21, 2013 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  15. TommyboyJr

    I think I know why Reid was in the hospital the other day. Going to his own hospital and his own Doctors, instead of using a Democare plan. He got a bad case of indigestion from eating crow.

    Obama and the top Dems pushing for immigration law?

    After the failed rollout of "Democare" and all of the lies, can anyone, really can anyone trust anything coming out a Reid the Democrat's mouth.

    There can be no trust of anything the liar in chief, or his cronies propose for law.

    December 21, 2013 11:09 pm at 11:09 pm |
  16. Iamnotfooled

    I hope Boehner really does grow a pair and not back down like Ryan did. Ryan should have backed up Boehner not thrown him under the bus.

    December 21, 2013 11:30 pm at 11:30 pm |
  17. Becky Gonzalez

    The Border is weak due to the lack of a Pay Reform for Border Patrol Agents, they work in remote and far away areas away from their stations and they have to discontinue the chase of illegals to go back to their stations and by the time the next shift comes to take over that group, they have been picked up. Congress needs to approve the pay reform that will save $1 Billion in ten years so they can get fairly compensated and are able to do their job.

    December 21, 2013 11:35 pm at 11:35 pm |
  18. Becky Gonzalez

    And this is the people who reduced the veterans pensions to give welfare to illegal aliens. The budget runs out of money, the social; security runs out of money, but you never see the Welfare running out of money. That's how Democrats wins elections.

    December 21, 2013 11:39 pm at 11:39 pm |
  19. phil

    We just need a one party system like mexico had since the only options seem to amnesty and the end of the sovernty
    of the U.S. Within 50 years the colonization and take over of the U.S by Mexico will be completed.

    December 21, 2013 11:55 pm at 11:55 pm |
  20. ThinkAgain

    @NATHAN WIMBERLY: "Who cares? Can't wait to see the GOBP stuff Jeb Bush down the tea potty's throats 2012 Mitt the twit style."

    I think you may be right. Jeb is being very quiet these days and he's the only sane repub with name recognition. I take that back; you have to be insane to think repub policies work when they are all PROVEN FAILURES.

    December 22, 2013 12:56 am at 12:56 am |
  21. ThinkAgain

    @ED1: "I thought you were in retirement if not you should be."

    Harry's got more smarts, drive, determination and sense of civic responsibility in his pinky than most folks have throughout their whole lives.

    Have a great vacation and rest up, Senator Reid – and thank you for your continued service!

    December 22, 2013 01:02 am at 1:02 am |
  22. YUCK

    now we know who are the oppressors:)and it isn't the party who approves of Nelson Mandela's message, its the party that opposes his message.

    December 22, 2013 01:38 am at 1:38 am |
  23. Carl K Schirg

    Immigration reform is another political ploy to get more voters. Unemployment is high and they will be taking the jobs our kids need. I say enforce the laws on the books and round them up and send all illegals back where they come from.I don't want they here and by the sound of the other posts neither do they.

    December 22, 2013 05:40 am at 5:40 am |
  24. Guest

    I hope he does compromise. I hope the Democrats compromise. Of course, I define compromise as "working towards a solution that is as acceptable as possible to as many people as possible" and the Democrats and Republicans both define compromise as "complete surrender of the other side with total capitulation to my will."

    These two parties care only about re-election and retention of power. They stopped working for us a long time ago, but simpletons who can't think keep telling themselves that the problems of today are all the fault of the other party, whichever it is. Congress has terrible approval ratings, especially the House, but watch 90% of them be re-elected in 2014 because the mouth-breathing masses will stop reading the ballot at the party affiliation.

    I even bet that someone will reply to me that it's really all the GOP's fault just to highlight my point.

    December 22, 2013 08:32 am at 8:32 am |
  25. Lizzie

    claudia gonzalez
    Hispanic and latinos should do something like "a day with out Mexicans "so that way this country will see that they need us that bad thing is they don't want to realize that

    December 21, 2013 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
    How about a day WITHOUT ILLIGALS, the Latinos that are born here and entered the country legally work hard everyday,
    It's the ones who broke the law comming here and then claiming to be LAW abiding citizens.
    As for Harry Reid, who was just released from the hosptal being treated for exhaustion, wonder what he was exhausted from, banging the gavel and screaming NO, NO, NO.

    December 22, 2013 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
1 2 3 4 5