Last week, we witnessed the ultimate convergence. Rep. Joe Heck (R-Henderson) came face to face with DREAMers and other immigrant rights activists demanding action on comprehensive immigration reform (CIR). He even prayed with them. At least it appeared as if a glimmer of hope for final CIR passage was still alive.
Yet this week, we were reminded again of the 21st Century Know Nothings doubling down on their plan to kill reform. And as long as House G-O-TEA "leaders" continue pandering to them, CIR will never happen. That's why several constituents asked Rep. Joe Heck this past Tuesday to not just say the right words on CIR, but also lead the way in making it happen.
On Tuesday, someone actually asked him that. Will he lead?
Rep. Heck was also specifically asked about the economic impact of immigration reform. He actually acknowledged the huge potential gains of passing CIR.
Yet when Rep. Heck had a chance to expound on his goals for immigration reform, he actually said he did not favor the CIR package that already passed the Senate in June. He claimed the path to citizenship in the Senate bill had too many exits and diamond lanes. He claimed the House is choosing a wiser path of doing immigration reform step by step.
Surely, he must be noticing those in his own party who don't even want to do that. And as long as they're allowed to continue calling the shots on immigration policy, CIR will never pass.
That's why activists have looked to find ways to bypass the intransigent anti-reform G-O-TEA faction. And this is why Republicans like Rep. Heck will have to be wiling to bypass them as well if they actually want to pass CIR this year. So are they?