GOP senator: House could pass Senate immigration bill today

Sen. Dean Heller (R-Nev.) said Wednesday that, if the House were to vote on the Senate immigration bill today, it would pass.

From the Reno Gazette-Journal:

“To get something done by the end of the year, I’m optimistic. I’m optimistic,” Heller told the crowd in the cafeteria at Pine Middle School in Reno. “Their (House) leadership is optimistic. They’ve got some push back. But I will tell you this in closing: I believe as I stand in front of you today, if you put comprehensive immigration reform on the floor of the House of Representative, it would pass today.”

Heller’s comments were greeted with loud applause.

“And I will make this bold prediction,” Heller continued. “That when and if this bill gets to the House floor, I do believe it will pass and every member of our House delegation will vote for it.”

House GOP leaders have said they won't allow a vote on the Senate package, which had limited GOP support in the Senate and hasn't exactly attracted a bunch of support from House Republicans.

Instead, House GOP leaders are pressing forward with a piecemeal approach that, unlike the Senate package, doesn't include a new path to citizenship for illegal immigrants currently in the country, but instead has a new path to legal status.

Aaron Blake covers national politics and writes regularly for The Fix.

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Aaron Blake · February 20, 2014