Schumer: House will pass Senate immigration bill

Chuck Schumer predicts victory on immigration reform. (J. Scott Applewhite/AP )
Sen. Chuck Schumer(D-NY) predicts victory on immigration reform. (J. Scott Applewhite/AP )

The House will pass the Senate immigration bill by the end of the year, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) predicted Sunday.

Political concerns, he argued, along with pressure from civil rights, religious, and business groups, would force the House's hand.

"I think by the end of this year, the House will pass the Senate bill," Schumer said on "Fox News Sunday."

"The national Republican Party leadership will tell John Boehner, 'If you don't pass a bill were going to be a minority party for a generation.' And he's not just a House leader, he's a party leader."

Boehner has said that the House will write its own immigration legislation, and that it will only come up for a vote if a majority of House Republicans support it (the so-called "Hastert Rule".) Boehner appears to be leaning towards a piecemeal approach, letting the House Judiciary Committee come out with small, separate bills. But Schumer declared that those bills were doomed.

"I don't think Speaker Boehner can pass piecemeal bills," he said, because Democrats won't vote for a bill that contains border security but no path to citizenship.

Boehner will have a choice, he said: "No bill or let a bill pass with a majority of Democrats and some Chamber of Commerce Republicans. And he'll find that a better choice."

Appearing after Schumer on the program, Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) was unconvinced.

He was nearly "moved to tears by Sen. Schumer's concern for the future of the Republican Party," he said, "but we're not going to take his advice."

Rachel Weiner covers cops and courts in Arlington and Alexandria.
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Washington Post · June 30, 2013