(NATIONAL REVIEW) With President Obama renewing his efforts to pressure House Republicans into passing immigration-reform legislation, opponents of the Gang of Eight bill hope to increase awareness about the potential pitfalls of going to a conference committee with the Senate and to pressure House leaders to refrain from doing so.
Last week, a coalition of more than a hundred conservative and tea-party groups, including the much-maligned but influential Heritage Action, urged House leaders to “make a public commitment that the House of Representatives will not conference any House immigration bill with any version of the Senate immigration bill or engage in any informal negotiations to do so.” The effort to pressure House leaders could take the form of a formal letter to them, modeled on the one circulated by Representative Mark Meadows (R., N.C.) in support of the effort to defund Obamacare.
House leadership still sees immigration reform as a priority. Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R., Va.) held meetings on the issue just days before the government shut down on October 1. Prominent members such as Paul Ryan (R., Wis.) are backing the reform effort, as are many deep-pocketed donors and powerful interest groups such as the Chamber of Commerce.