House Speaker John Boehner on Thursday might have doused the prospects for immigration reform this year, but Senate Democratic leaders are simultaneously stoking hope and bashing the GOP over the issue.
Boehner pointed to a trust gap between President Obama and lawmakers, saying members of his conference believe the administration will not enforce immigration legislation as it was intended to be.
“There’s widespread doubt about whether this administration can be trusted to enforce our laws,” Boehner said. “And it’s going to be difficult to move any immigration legislation until that changes.”
But key Senate Democrats viewed Boehner’s comments as rhetorical compensation for political divisions in the House GOP Conference. They’re also not willing to cede the issue they — along with Senate Republicans — invested so much time and energy into.
“I am not thrown back by Speaker Boehner’s statement,” said Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York and a member of the immigration Gang of Eight that helped pass legislation in the Senate last year. “He’s in a very difficult position. He is trying to figure out, in my judgment, how to get this done without his caucus or too many in his caucus rebelling.”
But Schumer’s sympathies went only so far. He continued: “But I think the leadership of the Republican Party knows that if they don’t do immigration reform, they have big problems down the road, and even immediately. And this idea that it’s gonna be easier to do in a presidential year? Come on.”
Although they rebutted the notion that the issue is dead in the House, Senate Democrats still walloped Republicans, deploying what has become a key political cudgel: that Republicans cause D.C.’s gridlock.
“They’re developing a trend here. Shutting down the government. Shutting down immigration reform. It’s the Shutdown Republicans Caucus. That isn’t what the American public sent us here to do,” said Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin of Illinois.
Sensing an opportunity to jab Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who earlier this week said the differences between the House and Senate approaches to immigration reform looked irresolvable, Majority Leader Harry Reid stepped in.
“There’s been a focus on Boehner because of how he waffles on this because of his caucus,” Reid said. “But don’t blame Boehner alone, because the Republican leader in the Senate threw cold water on this [Tuesday].”
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With three days until the first debate, the polls are coming fast and furious. The latest round:
- An Associated Press/Gfk poll of registered voters found very few voters committed, with Clinton leading Trump, 37% to 29%, and Gary Johnson at 7%.
- A McClatchy-Marist poll gave Clinton a six-point edge, 45% to 39%, in a four-way ballot test. Johnson pulls 10% support, with Jill Stein at 4%.
- Rasmussen, which has drawn criticism for continually showing Donald Trump doing much better than he does in other polls, is at it again. A new survey gives Trump a five-point lead, 44%-39%.
In contrast to Hillary Clinton's meticulous debate practice sessions, Donald Trump "is largely shunning traditional debate preparations, but has been watching video of…Clinton’s best and worst debate moments, looking for her vulnerabilities.” Trump “has paid only cursory attention to briefing materials. He has refused to use lecterns in mock debate sessions despite the urging of his advisers. He prefers spitballing ideas with his team rather than honing them into crisp, two-minute answers.”
Donald Trump "is on the precipice of becoming the only major-party presidential candidate this century not to reach out to millions of American voters whose dominant, first or just preferred language is Spanish. Trump has not only failed to buy any Spanish-language television or radio ads, he so far has avoided even offering a translation of his website into Spanish, breaking with two decades of bipartisan tradition."
Bill and Hillary Clinton have purchased the home next door to their primary residence in tony Chappaqua, New York, for $1.16 million. "By purchasing the new home, the Clinton's now own the entire cul-de-sac at the end of the road in the leafy New York suburb. The purchase makes it easier for the United States Secret Service to protect the former president and possible future commander in chief."