After immigration bill’s demise, Obama to huddle with Hispanic caucus

President Obama is scheduled to meet with members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Tuesday after an immigration bill high on their priority list failed to clear the Senate. 

Obama will huddle with representatives of the 24-member group in the Oval Office at 10:45 a.m., according to the president’s daily schedule.

The meeting will take place following the collapse of the DREAM Act, a controversial bill which offers legal residence to children who entered the U.S. illegally if they join the military or attend college.

The DREAM Act passed the House, but the Senate failed to advance the bill over the weekend. A cloture vote — which requires the support of 60 senators — failed to pass. Five Democrats from conservative and swing states joined Republicans in opposing the legislation.

Obama and the lawmakers will likely discuss ways to move forward on immigration issues heading into the next Congress, where Republicans will hold the majority in the House and a more robust minority in the Senate.

“I think both the president and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus wanted
to talk about a series of issues, including how to move forward on the
disappointing end to this session as it relates to the DREAM Act, and
what can be done in the next session,” White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said at his daily press briefing Tuesday.

Members of the caucus, most visibly Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) and Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.), had long pushed their colleagues to back the DREAM Act. 

The administration signaled Monday it will push for passage of the bill in the future. Organizing for America — President Obama’s political arm housed at the Democratic National Committee — sent out an appeal to supporters that vowed to revive the legislation.

Gibbs said it is unlikely that the administration will take executive action on immigration laws, saying any change has to go through Congress.

Conservative groups and most Republicans have derided the measure as amnesty legislation, but defeated Sen. Bob Bennett (R-Utah) indicated that the GOP could move forward on its own version of the legislation next year.

—This post was updated at 12:40 p.m.

Tags Luis Gutierrez Robert Menendez

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