Demographic realities, business and labor interests and politics have once again aligned to open up opportunities for the passage of a comprehensive immigration bill but the path through Congress remains lined with obstacles.
Last week, the Senate’s “Gang of 8” bill, survived the amendment process, passed out of the Judiciary Committee with bipartisan support, and is set to receive full Senate consideration when Congress reconvenes in June. All signs indicate that it is also likely to pass the chamber with bipartisan support. The bill’s fate in the House is far less certain. Any immigration bill passed in the lower chamber will have to first sail through a number of crucial veto points manned by conservative legislators who have been less than welcoming to immigrants in the past, particularly House leadership and the chairpersons of the House Judiciary Committee and Immigration Subcommittee.