Schumer and Graham on CIR
This past Sunday, Sens. Schumer and Graham were featured on NBC's Meet The Press (you can watch the four minute clip where the Senators talk immigration at NBC's website). Sen. Graham said that he would continue to work with Sen. Schumer to pass CIR. These two Senators have been leading the push for CIR. The conventional wisdom is that the House will not push forward on CIR unless the Senate acts firstly, which is why it is so important that these two are willing to move ahead.
Last week, Sen. Graham said that immigration would be the first casualty of partisanship if the Democrats pushed through the healthcare bill, which is exactly what the Democrats did. On Meet The Press, he backed off that position.
"I will keep working with Chuck on immigration [but] immigration's tough," said Sen. Graham. The Senator cautioned that unless President Obama leads the charge, "tough sledding lies ahead."
Is immigration reform dead? "I don't think so," said Sen. Schumer. Sen. Schumer continued, "We're real close." The Senator then listed groups like labor, business, and religious entities that are ready to sign on.
Many are willing to come to the simple conclusion that CIR has no chance of passing in 2010. That is certainly the likely outcome. As I have said before, the pessimism may be misplaced. It helps nobody to be needlessly optimistic or pessimistic on CIR. The reality is that with hard work CIR can be passed and with targeted advocacy healthcare occupations can be part of the discussion. Have you called your Congressman?