The agony of the House border bill seems to have two causes:
1) It has too many substantive weaknesses and loopholes for a bill that is supposed to buttress enforcement (Ryan wrote about the critical Numbers USA analysis here; Bill Kristol noted a number of the problems in his “kill the bill” post here).
2) It fails to address the president’s looming lawlessness in his contemplated new DACA. It seems the bare minimum Republicans could ask for in a border bill would be a provision denying the president the ability to waive more immigration laws. Yet, leadership has been resistant about talking about Obama’s potential new DACA, let alone including anything on it in the bill. Under heavy conservative pressure, it promised a mostly symbolic stand-alone measure.
Heaven knows the leadership has had trouble passing other bills, and it may be that it still gets this one through. But it is clear that just the prospect of Obama’s new DACA is creating an urgency about responding to his lawlessness that it will be very hard for Republicans to ignore.