Photo: House of Representatives
Republican Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart said that a number of his GOP colleagues in the House of Representatives are ready to tackle immigration reform, the Washington Post reported Friday.
“Can you draft legislation that has serious border and interior security, with sufficient leverage to force this or future administrations? I think we have drafted a way to actually do that,” the South Florida lawmaker told the Post’s Greg Sargent.
“Can we deal with the undocumented in a way that is fair, that makes sense, that adheres strictly to the rule of law? I think we’ve also cracked that nut,” Diaz-Balart said.
The Cuban-American congressman did not provide any details.
“We have legislative language that could potentially get the support of a majority of Republicans and a very large group of Democrats,” he said, without naming the other GOP members who are on board with the proposal.
However, the Republican leaders in the House would have to allow a debate on the legislative text, and Speaker John Boehner suggested several weeks ago that immigration reform could not be approved in 2014.
Even so, the words of Diaz-Balart show the interest some of his party colleagues have in making progress on the issue.
Analysts agree that if immigration reform is not approved sometime this year, getting it done in 2015 would be even more complicated because the presidential primaries will then begin to occupy the political parties’ attention.