Michael Jones-Correa, an immigration, race and ethnic politics expert and professor of Government at Cornell University, discusses why partisan intransigence continues to block immigration reform in Congress.
“With the Republican House leadership releasing a statement of principles for immigration reform, the prospect of legislation being passed this year seems somewhat brighter. However, any legislation is unlikely to include an explicit 'path to citizenship,' which is a deal breaker for many in the Republican Party. “The absence of citizenship from proposed legislation may well alienate liberal Democrats. The plans for immigration legislation may also derail as the Republicans splinter. The manner in which the legislation is being introduced in the House – piecemeal, in smaller bills – will encourage this. So it is possible the House could end up with proposals on the table that look like a Republican wish-list: greater numbers of H visas, both for tech and agriculture, but without any legalization for current undocumented residents at all. “In any event, the chance of an agreement will likely hinge on the House/Senate reconciliation committee, charged with fitting the Senate bill, passed in 2013, together with any House bill.
“Any foreseeable road to immigration reform is still a long shot in 2014.”