Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Know Nothing... Or Do Something?

2013 is nearly over. And what does Congress have to show for it? No really, think about that.

And then, look at this. According to a new poll done by Basswood Research and Jon Lerner (which was commissioned by, strong majorities of voters in 20 Republican held Congressional Districts want Congress to finish the job on comprehensive immigration reform (CIR).

The poll indicated that likely voters in the 20 congressional districts want to see movement on immigration, with 70 percent saying it is "very important" to deal with the issue and another 23 percent saying it is "somewhat important." A strong majority -- 77 percent -- said they would prefer even an imperfect solution to nothing at all.

A majority of those polled voiced support for the general principles of comprehensive immigration reform plans. Eighty percent supported the E-Verify program to check whether would-be employees are legally authorized to work in the U.S., and 78 percent supported a provision to allow legal status for undocumented young people who came to the U.S. as children. Seventy-one percent of those polled supported an "earned pathway to citizenship." The poll found high support as well for increasing fines for employers who hire undocumented immigrants, upping border patrol and fencing, and allowing for more high-tech legal immigration.

In sum, 76 percent of those polled favored a pathway to citizenship, with 50 percent saying it should include substantial increases to border security and 26 percent saying they would support it without such measures. Seventeen percent opposed a pathway to citizenship in general, according to the poll.

The kind of reform that S 744 and HR 15 embody enjoys widespread popularity. So why is CIR still stuck in the deep, dark closet in the House (where bills are usually sent to die)?

Once again, the answer lies with the 21st Century Know Nothings. They simply don't want any kind of CIR. And because House Republican "leaders" fear a "TEA" powered coup, they are doing whatever they can to mollify the G-O-TEA Culture Warriors.

Yet while they're doing that, they're going against the wishes of the rest of the nation. And instead of seeing progress on this or any other issue, Congress is stuck on a hamster wheel of seemingly never ending manufactured crises. Any wonder why Congress is so unpopular right now?

Of course, they can do something about it. But of course, that means doing something. And that means Congressional Republican "leaders" will have to give up their "Do Nothing Strategy". And in the mean time, it means more House Republicans (cough- Joe Heck- cough) must speak up and encourage doing something.

Either this happens, or we're in for another year of nothing.

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