GOP lawmaker: Immigration reform can pass under Obama

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A Republican lawmaker says immigration reform can pass Congress before President Obama leaves the White House.

California GOP Rep. Jeff DenhamJeffrey (Jeff) John DenhamLatino advocacy group targets 7 Republicans in push against ObamaCare replacement Republicans push for 'visionary' Amtrak leader Obama's proposed high-speed rail network stuck in station MORE, a Democratic target this year, says a bill has to happen given the humanitarian crisis on the U.S. southern border.

"I don't think we can afford to wait until [President Obama] is out of office," he told The Hill.

Denham, who represents a district with a large Hispanic population, says that reform must go well beyond adding immigration judges and sending children back to their home countries in Central America.

"I think that we're going to address the supplemental first … and make sure that we are at least dealing with the courts … with that we're also going to deal with the border security bills. I don't think you can just have a debate on those two issues without asking the questions about the 11.5 million [illegal immigrants who] are here today."