Transcript for Roundtable II: The Week in Politics
line. That's for that. Back to the roundtable. And straight to the congresswoman. It's true that the speaker may believe his party's future is on the line. He says no bill comes to the floor unless it's supported by a majority of republicans. Can that get enough support of democrats to pass? Well, I think speak er boehner will have to lead on this. He recognizes what's at stake. We're not going to bring the senate bill to the floor. But it's a framework with the house. I think that depending on how they set up the rules, we can get a majority of democrats and more than enough republicans to move it forward. You have to have a majority of democrats, you're not going get a bill that has a majority of democrats and a majority of republicans? I don't want to predict what's going to happen. But there are enough people in the republican party who recognize how important it is for them and the nation. I feel really confident, but not overly so that we can move forward. Meanwhile, I was struck by the number of republican voices in the house who said no way, no how. And outside, bill crystal, leading republican commentator. Here's what he wrote this week, he said comprehensive immigration reform, just say no. Not only is it bad policy, but it would be good politics to stop the senate bill. Here's what he said. It may be reassuring to elected officials, it won't hurt in 2014 or 2016. The house gop for the sake of party and country should say no. No capitulation, no comprehensive bill, no compromise. I wouldn't be taking his advice from bill crystal who selected sarah palin as a leading figure in the republican party which was a disaster in 2008. To me it's inevitable. Passage? It's inevitable it will pass. Policy and politics is merged together. Republicans know, whether they say it out loud or ney're going to have to deal with it if they want to be the majority party any time in the future with the numbers and the demographics of this country. We are a majority-minority country in about 25 years. They understand that if they hold their ground. What you will see is a series of republicans who we thought were against it over the next weeks or month will do what happened in the senate, will say no, we need to do this. As that happens, they're going to have to have a conference committee, immigration reform will pass. Do you agree, peggy? I think this is a really tough one. I'm not sure what's going to happen in the house. I think there is a little bit of a perception in america that both of the parties in washington want to do what's best for them and solve their problem with immigration. For the democrats, their going to get new voters, for the republicans, remove the things they believe has blocked them from being able to do successful reachout to hispanics. I think the problem with the immigration bill is americans have a problem trusting congress with anything called comprehensive. I can imagine the republicans in the house now starting to tease out good parts of the bill that everybody can agree on and say let's vote on that. Take it apart. The strategy that some republicans are calling for would be the issue. You might pass something on border security in the house, you might pass something on letting in a certain amount of guest workers. I don't believe that a majority of republicans would support legalizing those who are now here illegally. Everybody thought this was going to get done because of the politics. But they may be shifting in the republican party, especially on the conservative wing. The notion they need latino voters is fading in some parts of the conservative movement who say we just need to up the white vote from 59% to maybe 63, 65% and we win the presidency. And given the voting rights act, we can gerrymander the districts so we don't have to face latino voters. Forgive me, there are also republicans who aren't thinking of in terms of the percent of the race of the voter that they get. They're saying wait a minute, the republicans ought to have good, sound, populist policy. That's the way to get everybody, including the hispanic vote. 200 billion in positive economic activity. That's immigration reform. When you look at numbers like that, you can begin to make the I don't want to put it off the table. I know it's a tough slog in the house. I've seen what's been going on in that place. But we can get this done and have to get it done for the country. I totally agree with the congresswoman. There's 12 million people that to a large degree drive economic growth. I live in texas, austin, spend time in california, those two states without a huge body of these folks who are undocumented who drive a huge part of the economy, this country would not be the same country it was without that. We have to do something about that. The politics and the policy is there. Something will get done.
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