FILE – In this Jan. 31, 2014 file photo, President Barack Obama speaks in the East Room of the White House in Washington. As Republican leaders dampen hopes for overhauling immigration laws this year, the White House for now is betting that the display of GOP resistance is temporary and tactical and is resisting pressure from some allies to have President Barack Obama take matters into his own hands. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)
WASHINGTON (AP) — As Republican leaders dampen expectations for overhauling immigration laws this year, the White House is hoping that the GOP resistance is temporary and tactical, and it’s resisting pressure from some political allies for President Barack Obama to take matters into his own hands and ease his administration’s deportation record.
For a president looking for a legacy piece of legislation, the current state of the immigration debate represents a high wire act. He could act alone to slow deportations, and probably doom any chance of a permanent and comprehensive overhaul. Yet if he shows too much patience, the opportunity to fix immigration laws as he wants could well slip away.
House Speaker John Boehner on Thursday all but ruled out passage of immigration legislation before the fall midterm elections, saying Republicans had trouble trusting that Obama would implement all aspects of an immigration law.
White House officials say they believe Boehner ultimately wants to get it done. But they acknowledge that Boehner faces stiff resistance from conservatives who oppose any form of legalization for immigrants who have crossed into the United States illegally or overstayed their visas. As well, Republicans are eager to keep this election year’s focus on Obama’s contentious health care law.
Obama is willing to give Boehner space to operate and to tamp down the conservative Login to read more