Is Speaker Boehner ready to pass immigration reform?

Speaker Boehner makes a funny face

Last year saw a lot of work on behalf of both the Administration and the Senate to pass a comprehensive immigration reform bill – all the way from blueprints to drafts to a bill passed in the Senate. Throughout the year, though, the House appeared not to budge in its apparent commitment to inaction on immigration, leaving some folks wondering whether comprehensive immigration reform is dead in the water. But Speaker of the House John Boehner has recently made a hire that has folks getting hopeful that House Republicans will take some action on immigration sooner than later. The New York Times reports:

Mr. Boehner has in recent weeks hired Rebecca Tallent, a longtime immigration adviser to Senator John McCain, the Arizona Republican who has long backed broad immigration changes. Advocates for an overhaul say the hiring, as well as angry comments by Mr. Boehner critical of Tea Party opposition to the recent budget deal in Congress, indicates that he is serious about revamping the immigration system despite deep reservations from conservative Republicans.

Though Speaker Boehner has said that he doesn’t love the idea of a comprehensive reform bill and in fact prefers a more piecemeal approach, it’s also becoming increasingly clear that some sort of action must be taken if Republicans are to appeal to Latin@ voters, and that the efforts of conservative Tea Party legislators to block reforms are not exactly helping on that quest. So now the Speaker’s hired someone with some conservative immigration savvy, and is ready to start making some headway on a reform that is passable to his fellow Republicans (which probably means ensuring lots of policing and border security to guarantee cash to the security contractors and for-profit detention corporations who have showered his campaign with generous donations).

While Republicans take the time to figure out their strategy for getting some brown people to vote for them, people are still being deported in record numbers, families continue to be separated, women and trans folks continue to face horrifying conditions in detention.

1bfea3e7449eff65a94e2e55a8b7acda-bpfullVerónica is not impressed.

New York, NY

Verónica Bayetti Flores has spent the last years of her life living and breathing reproductive justice. She has led national policy and movement building work on the intersections of immigrants' rights, health care access, young parenthood, and LGBTQ liberation, and has worked to increase access to contraception and abortion, fought for paid sick leave, and demanded access to safe public space for queer youth of color. In 2008 Verónica obtained her Master’s degree in the Sexuality and Health program at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. She loves cooking, making art, listening to music, and thinking about the ways art forms traditionally seen as feminine are valued and devalued. In addition to writing for Feministing, she is currently spending most of her time doing policy work to reduce the harms of LGBTQ youth of color's interactions with the police and making sure abortion care is accessible to all regardless of their income.

Verónica is a queer immigrant writer, activist, and rabble-rouser.

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