During an appearance on ABC’s This Week on Sunday, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-GA) admitted that Republicans are likely to oppose any immigration reform proposal introduced by President Obama because they personally dislike the Commander-in-Chief.
“An Obama plan led and driven by Obama in this atmosphere with the level of hostility towards the president and the way he goads the hostility I think is very hard to imagine that bill, that his bill is going to pass the House,” Gingrich said. “I think that negotiated with a Senate immigration bill that has to have bipartisan support could actually get to the president’s desk.”
The Senate-backed framework for immigration reform, which enhances security on the border and includes a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, shares many similarities with Obama’s own proposal, though the president has repeatedly said that if Congress fails to make progress, he will introduce his own reform legislation.
That plan, obtained by USA Today, “mirrors many provisions of the bipartisan 2007 bill” spearheaded by Ted Kennedy and Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) and would allow unauthorized immigrants “to become legal permanent residents within eight years.” “The plan also would provide for more security funding and require business owners to check the immigration status of new hires within four years,” the paper reports.
Despite its bipartisan nature, the draft proposal was immediately panned by Republicans. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) — a member of the Senate group working towards producing comprehensive legislation — called it “dead on arrival,” while Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) said it demonstrated that Obama is “looking for a partisan advantage and not a bipartisan solution.”