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McDonough: Obama Doesn’t Want a ‘Typical Washington Back-and-Forth’ on Immigration


On CBS’s Face the Nation, White House chief of staff Denis McDonough echoed what he had said elsewhere this morning, that the leak of the White House immigration proposal yesterday isn’t a change in strategy and shouldn’t disrupt the current work in Congress on related bills. He affirmed that the proposal had been “circulating around the administration,” which he said was consistent with the president’s promise a few weeks ago to come up with his own proposal, and send it to Congress in the event that Republican and Democratic legislators’ negotiations stall. McDonough admitted that there’s “no evidence” congressional talks have broken down, and yet the White House, one assumes, intentionally released its immigration proposal yesterday by leaking it to USA Today reporters.

McDonough said that the administration is committed to substantive progress on immigration reform and wants to avoid the typical Washington process of political shots back and forth — despite the fact that yesterday’s events, triggered by the White House’s leak (followed by Senator Rubio calling it “dead on arrival”) seem to have been precisely that.

The White House chief of staff also explained that one of the president’s immigration-reform proposal is to “fix the border-security situation” by “mak[ing] the progress of the past four years permanent,” which seems like a much less aggressive approach than congressional Republicans will want. 


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