Policy: Law

Nancy Pelosi tells John Boehner to stop making excuses about immigration bill

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Beltway Confidential,Opinion,Congress,Joel Gehrke,Immigration,John Boehner,Nancy Pelosi,Law

Distrust of President Obama's willingness to enforce border security provisions is no reason not to pass an immigration bill with a path to citizenship for the estimated 11.5 million illegal immigrants in the United States, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., told reporters.

"That's not a reason not to do immigration bill, that's an excuse," Pelosi said during her weekly briefing when asked about comments made earlier Thursday by House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, who said that "it's going to be difficult to move any immigration legislation" as long as there's widespread doubt about whether this administration can be trusted to enforce our laws."

"Why don't we just pack up and go home?" Pelosi asked exasperatedly. "We have a democratic system. We have checks and balances. We have three branches of government — in fact, we're the first," she said, referring to Congress' primacy in the Constitution.

"Enough of the excuses," she continued, although she believes that Boehner is in "good faith" that he wants to pass an immigration bill.

"I do believe he does not want to be the speaker who says, 'I'll do an immigration bill as long as it creates an underclass,' " Pelosi said, emphasizing that any immigration package must include a path to citizenship, rather than simply legal status.

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