House Democrats to Introduce Immigration Reform Bill

Bill will include increased border security, pathway to citizenship.

ByABC News
October 1, 2013, 11:41 PM
Immigration reform seemed possible this year, but events like Syria may be getting in the way.
Immigration reform seemed possible this year, but events like Syria may be getting in the way.
ABC News

WASHINGTON, Oct. 2, 2013— -- House Democrats, frustrated by the lack of action by House leadership and fearing all hope of a bi-partisan comprehensive immigration reform bill is lost, are expected to introduce an immigration bill of their own today.

House sources tell ABC News the Democratic bill will mirror the bipartisan legislation passed by the Senate in late June -- including both increased border security and a pathway to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants.

Congressional aides who have seen the bill say much of it came from the months of work done by the "Gang of 7," before it broke apart in the House late last month, with influential Republicans abandoning the effort over disagreements on health care costs.

The new bill, which is expected to be introduced on the floor today, is purely a Democratic party effort designed, sources say, to put pressure on Republican leadership in the House who have refused to support a comprehensive bill in favor of a piecemeal series of laws, none of which so far includes the critical Pathway to Citizenship component so important to the Hispanic community.

Democrats say the bill is designed to show unity in their party's support for immigration reform and demonstrate to Latinos and others groups pushing for reform that it is the GOP preventing progress on immigration reform and the landmark legislation passed by the Senate.

Sources say the bill's supporters realize that it has little chance of passing because there is still no indication that House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, would allow it to come to a vote.

Boehner has said repeatedly he has no plans to bring the bi-partisan Senate bill to the house floor.

Instead, sources acknowledge, the bill will receive predominantly Democratic support and languish in the House without ever coming to a vote.