- The Washington Times - Sunday, February 9, 2014

Sen. Charles E. Schumer, New York Democrat and an author of a comprehensive immigration bill passed last year by the Senate, suggested that Congress should enact immigration legislation now and delay enforcement until President Obama is out of office.

Mr. Schumer pointed to recent comments from Republican leaders, including House Speaker John A. Boehner, Ohio Republican, that they want to pass immigration legislation but they don’t trust President Obama to enforce the laws.

“So there’s a simple solution: Let’s enact the law this year, but simply not let it actually start ‘til 2017 after President Obama’s term is over,” Mr. Schumer said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

“Make no mistake about it … this view that we can get this done in 2015, ‘16 is false,” he said. “You’ll have the Republican presidential primaries that pull people over to the right … so, simple. Let’s say to our Republican colleagues, ‘You don’t trust Obama? Enact the law now, but put it into effect in 2017 and we can get something real done for America.”

Sen. Rob Portman, Ohio Republican, responded that some Republicans would be interested in such a plan if the proper enforcement mechanisms were put in place.

“In other words, make sure the border is secure, make sure we have a workforce enforcement program that works,” he said. “The concern we have, as you know, is to get back to the 1986 law, last time we did this, where we did provide legalization but didn’t do the enforcement; 3 million people were legalized, another 6 million people came illegally. So I think that’s what Republicans are looking for, is enforcement first.”

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