Immigration Bill and Paul Abdul circa 1989: 2 Steps Forward, 2 Steps Back. On MSNBC’s Thomas Roberts Show
MSNBC’s Thomas Roberts has now asked me several times about the likelihood of the immigration overhaul bill passing. Indeed, the Senate has green lighted putting border security on steroids to please conservatives in exchange for their support it.
Because every time a breakthrough appears to move what could be the most significant piece of bipartisan legislation forward (which represents a boon to private contractors who turn their focus and profit margins from Iraq to the border), something happens that sets any progress back. The bill is frozen in a holding pattern.
It reminds me of the Paul Abdul lyrics of Opposites Attracts:
I take two steps forward
I take two steps back.
Immigration limbo isn’t an option now that the bill has gotten sucked into the congressional calendar vortex–to the Senate floor and after a Friday vote appears to be headed to the House of Representatives. It may go further than it did in 2007 when that immigration bill died in the Senate. Now, things don’t look good in the lower chamber. The conservative extremes are more pronounced and have little incentive to compromise: red districts are blood red, blue districts are deep ocean blue meaning “red” lawmakers don’t fear the Latino vote which may not be significant in their area. What weighs on their minds and fundraising capabilities? Their base constituents and voters who will likely show up at August recess town hall meetings as angry as they were when the Affordable Care Act “Obamacare” was debated.
And remember one of the recent changes to our political culture: Washington has been put on a diet–the chicharrón has been nixed from the pupusa. Cleaning up the pork has left little negotiating margin.
No: you vote for immigration and I’ll earmark dólares for a new bridge, re-paved roads, or a community center.
This is one of the hot topics discussed on MSNBC’s Thomas Roberts Show with AOL co-founder and Revolution CEO Steve Case making a surprise cameo appearance before The Agenda Panel. ThinkProgress.org’s Judd Legum and the Huffington Post’s Ryan Grim also joined us to discuss not just immigration but the ongoing drama of leaker private contractor Edward Snowden who spilled National Security Agency secrets and the Obama administration’s decision to drop its opposition to lowering the age restrictions for the Plan B or morning after pregnancy prevention pill.
This post is part of the original The Wise Latina Club series “Anatomy of an Immigration Debate” which analyze the charged political and social context of this debate within the context of the extraordinary demographic changes confirmed by the 2010 U.S. Census. Click here to read previous entries.Will the immigration bill pass the House of Representatives?