Representative Mike McCaul, chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, came out forcefully yesterday against any effort to use his border-security bill as a Trojan horse for amnesty. As I explained last week, the plan of the Democrats and their pro-amnesty GOP allies was (and may still be) to pass the targeted (if inadequate) McCaul–Jackson Lee bill on its own, go to conference with the Senate, and emerge with something very much like the decidedly non-targeted Schumer-Rubio comprehensive bill, which amnesties all the illegals, doubles legal immigration, and makes empty enforcement promises.
“I am not gonna go down the road of conferencing with the Senate [comprehensive immigration reform] bill,” McCaul said on conservative radio host Laura Ingraham’s show Wednesday. “And I told Boehner that he needs to stand up and make that very clear that we are not going to conference with the Senate on this. We’re not going to conference with the Senate, period.”
This latest roadblock would seem to make it even less likely any bill will reach the president’s desk this year. Even as Democrats are reluctantly signaling their openness to a non-comprehensive approach, as Andrew Stiles reports today on the homepage, Republicans seem to be digging in. Raul Labrador said the GOP would be “crazy” to negotiate with the Democrats on immigration. Marco Rubio has told House Republicans not to conference with the Senate over his own bill. And Judiciary chairman Bob Goodlatte told Frank Gaffney this week that “it is better to not produce any bill than to produce a bad bill and Obamacare should be the lesson for that.”
None of this means the amnesty fight is over. But the pro-amnesty crowd is facing an increasingly steep climb.