WASHINGTON — Emboldened by his victory over Republicans in the government shutdown crisis and ignoring the debacle of his healthcare launch, President Barack Obama on Thursday announced he would refocus his efforts to provide immediate legal status to an estimated 11 million illegal immigrants.
Obama called on Congress, specifically House Republicans, to pass the Senate bill that he says would boost the economy by $1.4 trillion while reducing the deficit.
“It doesn’t make sense to have 11 million people who are in this country illegally without any incentive or any way for them to come out of the shadows, get right with the law, meet their responsibilities and permit their families then to move ahead,” Obama said during a White House event.
“It’s not smart, it’s not fair, it doesn’t make sense,” Obama said.
“We should pass immigration reform — it’s good for our economy, it’s good for our national security, it’s good for our people, and we should do it this year,” Obama added.
House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner on Wednesday told reporters that he would consider bringing immigration legislation to the floor for a vote before the end of the year.
“I still think that immigration reform is an important subject that needs to be addressed and I am hopeful,” Boehner said.
However, with House Republicans refocused on multiple failures of the Obamacare rollout and hearings scheduled to address the issue taking up the October calendar, it is looking less likely that the president will prevail.
Colorado Rep. Doug Lamborn’s position echoes that of a majority of other Republicans, insisting that border security be addressed in addition to reforms in the immigration law that would allow states to help enforce federal laws.
“I believe the Senate bill mistakenly allows those who have broken our laws to go to the front of the line,” Lamborn said in a statement.
“I have said all along that it makes more sense to take a targeted approach to this divisive issue and consider legislation that has broad support,” Lamborn said.
“I will not negotiate on amnesty,” Lamborn said.