Republican U.S. Rep. Charles Boustany of Louisiana just finished an editorial board meeting with the Baton Rouge Advocate. I asked him about the prospects for immigration reform this year, in light of persistent rumors that the Republican leadership is planning to push it through after most of the House primaries, so as to spare their members a vote that could earn them attacks from the right.
Boustany said what we all know, that Boehner would like to address the issue, because “there is no ‘good’ time to do it,” but it (supposedly) needs to be done. He said he has spoken to the Speaker about it numerous times (whether pro or con wasn’t clear to me).
Here’s the news, albeit just one congressman’s analysis of the situation. “I don’t see it happening,” Boustany said. “We just don’t have the votes.” The president, he said, had poisoned the well too much, and there also isn’t sentiment within the caucus to address it this year anyway.
For those of us who think it is sheer madness, not just political suicide but political mass suicide, for Republicans to pass anything at all on immigration reform this year, that is good news. Let’s hope Boustany is right. There is no way on God’s green Earth that anything Obama would actually sign would be palatable even to moderate restrictionists like me, much less to real anti-immigration hard-liners.