Cornyn: Senate immigration bill is 'dead on arrival in the House'

Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) said Wednesday that the Senate immigration bill “is dead on arrival in the House” unless border security triggers are added.

“Everybody knows that the Senate bill is dead on arrival in the House,” Cornyn said Wednesday while discussing his amendment on the Senate floor. “Without a border security trigger this bill has zero chance of passing in the House.”

Cornyn offered the same assessment of the Senate immigration reform bill last week when opponents decried his amendment as a "poison pill" that would spark opposition to the underlying measure. 

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A week later, Cornyn's amendment appears to have little chance of being approved, and the prospects of winning more than 70 votes for immigration reform in the Senate have also dimmed. 

Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) separately warned this week that he opposes comprehensive immigration reform and will only allow a vote on an immigration bill that wins the support of a majority of House Republicans. 

The Senate is expected to vote on Cornyn's amendment as early as today and could approve the immigration reform bill next week, but it will face difficult hurdles in the House. 

Cornyn’s "Results" amendment would require that the border enforcement standards in the underlying bill be met before anyone could be granted permanent legal status.

The Senate bill under consideration sets the goals of 100 percent border-monitoring capabilities and a 90 percent apprehension rate of illegal entrants along the Southern border, but does not require them before granting permanent legal residency. Cornyn would make those goals mandatory. He would also require that the Department of Homeland Security have a biometric entry-exit system fully operational before anyone is given legal status.

“Unfortunately this bill contains more hollow promises and no real trigger,” Cornyn said. “I don’t think promises alone are good enough.”