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Boehner: Immigration reform could happen next year

Greg Nash

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Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) on Tuesday said Congress could tackle immigration reform next year if conditions are right. 

Boehner, however, warned it is contingent on President Obama following the law as he decides on executive actions to take on the issue. 

{mosads}”So I would hope that the president would continue to follow the law, and begin to take steps that would better secure our border,” Boehner said on Hugh Hewitt’s radio show. “It would create an environment where you could do immigration reform in a responsible way next year.”

In July, Boehner said the House would not take up immigration reform this year, pointing to the flood of child immigrants crossing the border over the summer and Obama “pounding his chest about using his phone and pen.” 

“But I did outline that, you know, there’s a possibility that Congress could take this issue up next year,” he said. “But if that were going to happen, there are things that he should do, and things he should not do as we lead up to this.”

Republicans have cited their lack of confidence in Obama to follow the law as a main hindrance to immigration reform. 

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Calif.) office told Boehner to “get serious,” pointing to a number of instances in the past two years in which Boehner expressed confidence in a deal.

“Speaker Boehner has a long history of breaking his promises on immigration,” Pelosi’s office said.   

Obama had tasked his administration to come up with steps he could take on his own after determining Congress would not act this year. He was supposed to unveil the plan at the end of summer. However, the White House said Tuesday that date could be pushed back. 

A number of Republicans, including Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), have warned Obama that sweeping executive action could hinder broader immigration reform in Congress for the next decade. 

Some Republicans have threatened to use the budget process to halt any action. Boehner was confident Tuesday Congress would pass a continuing resolution through December. 

“We’ve got to fund the government until the end of September, and so I would expect there will be a continuing resolution to fund the government from Sept. 30 into early December,” Boehner said.  

— Updated 11:25 a.m.

Tags Immigration reform John Boehner

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