POLITICS: PennAve

Nancy Pelosi hopeful Republicans will draft immigration reforms Democrats like

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House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said House Speaker John Boehner has assured her Republicans are working on immigration reform principles that Democrats can support, a move she called a "good-faith effort."

"I'm assured by the speaker that they will be good and that [they will be] acceptable to probably all of us, and I hope that is the case," said Pelosi, D-Calif., during her weekly briefing with reporters Wednesday.

Immigration reform legislation stalled last year in the GOP-controlled House after the two parties failed to find common ground. Democrats say any comprehensive immigration reform legislation must include a pathway to citizenship for immigrants living illegally in the U.S., while Republicans say border-strengthening measures must be a central part of any deal.

Pelosi said she recently spoke with Boehner, R-Ohio, about the basic "principles" of advancing the immigration reform debate.

"I don't know the form [House Republicans] will take it," she said. "But I believe it is a good-faith effort to find common ground. And we look forward to seeing what they are."

The Democrat on Wednesday reaffirmed her party's citizenship stance, saying "there cannot be a contrary" position. But she also expressed a willingness to negotiate exactly how illegal workers could achieve citizenship, and how long it could take.

"When we talk about a path to citizenship, it doesn't say you're instantly a citizen, all of you," she said. "No, there are hurdles to get over. The path is, in some ways, an arduous one."

Pelosi also suggested she won't necessarily dismiss a GOP immigration proposal outright as it can serve as a starting point for negotiations — even if it's initially unpalatable to Democrats.

"Any proposal is a starter," she said. "The starter is that's not where we're going to go."

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