House Republicans’ Intransigence On Immigration Reform Will Cost Them Seats In November


A year ago Friday marked the one year anniversary since the Senate passed a comprehensive immigration reform bill with bipartisan support. Of course, because the House of Representatives has been held hostage by an extreme faction of the Republican Party for the last few years, the measure has been stuck in inaction this entire time. Tea Party Republicans have refused to allow immigration reform to move forward in the House in order to appeal to the most racist and bigoted sectors of their voting base.

Despite the fact that the majority of Americans, and a large portion of Republicans, feel that undocumented immigrants should be given a pathway to citizenship. the Tea Party has refused to budge. Even though many influential leaders in the business, financial and agricultural fields have come out and supported comprehensive immigration reform, the extremely conservative wing of the House doesn’t care. Heck, the Congressional Budget Office has estimated that the passage of the Senate’s immigration bill will cut federal budget deficits by $158 billion over the next decade. Regardless, these supposed ‘fiscal conservatives’ will not allow this bill to see the House floor.

Besides the obvious racial issues at play behind the Tea Party’s objections to anything that helps non-white immigrants become citizens, the other major reason they are fighting this tooth and nail is their fear that Democrats will reap the rewards of immigration reform for decades to come. The fact is, the vast majority of Hispanics and Asians in this country vote for the Democratic Party. The far-right is worried that giving millions of undocumented immigrants an opportunity to step out of the shadows and into the light will basically mean the GOP will never be able to win the White House. Especially when you consider that today’s GOP essentially only appeals to old white people who hate government and brown people with equal zeal.

Therefore, rather than change their policies and approach, and attempt to be more inclusive in their vision, Republicans, and especially the Tea Party (though it is becoming harder and harder to differentiate between the two), have decided to just keep pushing against the tide of change and embrace the hate and bigotry that has become their hallmark. I guess the feeling is that they just need to appeal to their ever-shrinking base and make sure that they can somehow show up to vote in greater numbers than the much larger section of the country that rejects their vision. It is obviously a Quixotic plan, and is destined to fail, but in the here and now, it might allow them to win elections and hold on to majorities in gerrymandered voting districts.

However, it appears that the tide might be changing now in certain House races. In a key race in Colorado, Democratic candidate Andrew Romanoff has been hammering his opponent, incumbent Republican Rep. Mike Coffman, on his record and rhetoric when it comes to immigration issues. The AP ran a story on Friday detailing how the GOP’s lack of action on immigration may very well cost them this House seat, as well as doom Senatorial candidate Cory Gardner in his bid to unseat Democratic incumbent Mark Udall. On his campaign website, Romanoff has a list of Coffman’s actions and statements regarding immigration reform since taking office. Currently, this election is seen as a toss-up. However, if Coffman loses, a key factor will be his stance on immigration.

Meanwhile, in Nevada, Democratic candidate Erin Bilbray has also gone for the throat when it comes to highlighting her opponent’s views and voting record on immigration reform. Rep. Joe Heck (R-NV) has called comprehensive immigration reform a “political gimmick” and has refused to go against the radical wing of the House GOP. In response to this, Bilbray made the following statement:

“Joe Heck is more intent on protecting his out-of-state, billionaire super-pac friends than families in Southern Nevada that are being torn apart every day by our immigration policies. After a year of excuses, inaction and talking out of both sides of their mouth on immigration reform it is time for Congressman Heck and the Republican leadership to act on immigration reform. Immigration reform is not a Latino issue or an Asian Pacific Islander issue, it’s a community issue and Southern Nevada families deserve a representative who will stand up and fight for them in Congress.”

Much like Colorado’s 6th District race, this one is also seen as a toss-up. This district, along with Coffman’s, went for President Obama in 2012. With both incumbents being seen as out-of-touch with the rest of the country on immigration and part of the problem in Congress, it looks very possible, if not likely, that these two seats will flip to the Democrats.

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12 Replies to “House Republicans’ Intransigence On Immigration Reform Will Cost Them Seats In November”

  1. Because of the Y’all Qaeda wing of the GOP it is possible that the next Republican president hasn’t been born yet

  2. Apparently the Repubs think that there are enough ignorant teabillies to pull them through at election time. They are spitting in the face of women, minorities, LGBT, immigrants, and sensible people every where. I have news for them, they don’t. They are a dying breed and there is no room for them it todays society.

  3. Strangely, the billionaire donors must be crapping their pants, unless they think their money will turn the tide. Unless they think their gerrymandering will make sure the in is in, they are watching their party of choice turn against every facet of American life except old people and gun freaks

  4. Next Congress MUST pay CIR along with ‘Gerrymander Reform’ as in make it federal that NO STATE LEGISLATURES divide the districts. Non-partisan, population determined districts. WE THE PEOPLE pick our legislators, NOT politicians picking VOTERS.

  5. The only thing the Republican Party appears to be interested in legislating is morality – unless and until that changes, and they can present a mature, reasonable, and responsible platform to the voting public and stay out of peoples’ private lives, the will continue to marginalize themselves. The money thrown into the election cycles only does so much, and it is more effective when the two sides are more closely aligned. They’re so far out in left field now that they can’t even buy their way back to sanity.
    GOTV November 2014

  6. In fairness, the article should say that immigration MAY cost the Republicans seats in November. There are lots and lots of people who can’t shake racism, or just basic tribal fears, and when they are told that they are being invaded by people unlike them, they go primal and defensive. And in the Southwest, where those fears are compounded by Mexican drug gang criminality spilling over the border, the resistance is even stronger.

    Personally, I think the way to get the most out of the immigration issue is to drop the “path to citizenship” goal as being essential, and accept permanent residence — for now. That appeals to lots of centrists and even conservatives, without losing liberals, and resistance to it makes opponents look small-minded. Which of course they are. So let’s help them claim that label.

  7. I think the way to get the most out of the immigration issue is to drop the “path to citizenship

    While that may sound like a reasonable compromise I would take issue with it.
    No taxation without representation.

  8. Therepyblicans are vindictive in character.For a country like Ameica they show model to all other countries that politics and personal interest is gone after an election to serve their cintituents more better

  9. Every day you can listen to the pundits predict victory for the GOP in the House & Senate because of their angry, energized base. The thing they never talk about is how unpopular their policies that have been enacted in blue, purple, & even some red states are. That coupled with the GOP in DC refusing to help anyone who is not in the 1% should provide lots of impetus for the Democratic base to finally turn out to vote in an off election year.

  10. Why hasn’t anyone addressed the COST of passing this bill?
    With education and Safety Nets (WIC, SNAP, TANF, Supplemental Housing, Supplemental Income, Medicaid, Pell Grants, Disability, Child and Income tax credits) It will cost close to 6 Trillion dollars

    In 2009 – $12,000 a year to educate 1 child. KP-12 – 13 years = $156,000

    There are 6,000,000 Children belonging to unauthorized citizens of other countries in the US
    6,000,000 X $156,000 TOTAL $936,000,000,000
    (as much as the Iraq war only wars end)
    AND these kids are already having kids that they will not support.

    With the border “CRISIS” in the end you will find that there were 150,000 children that snuck over the border because we only catch 1 in 3. And there is no one to pay property, county, state, federal taxes to contribute to their cost.

  11. I know you forgot the care of Veterans so wars never end.
    Illegal immigrants benefit the U.S. economy
    The Congressional Budget Office in 2007 answered this question in the following manner: “Over the past two decades, most efforts to estimate the fiscal impact of immigration in the United States have concluded that, in aggregate and over the long term, tax revenues of all types generated by immigrants—both legal and unauthorized—exceed the cost of the services they use.” According to the New York Times, the chief actuary of the Social Security Administration claims that undocumented workers have contributed close to 10% ($300 billion) of the Social Security Trust Fund.

    Read more:

  12. Claudia, I hope you realize that all you are going to do is die anyway.

    No wonder the USA look like hateful fools to the world.

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