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Welcome to Daily Kos Elections: Policy. This group was start to create an environment for the discussion of the electoral ramifications of policy and to do so in detail. As new policies will be pursued in the first year of the new presidential term, this group will be useful for those looking to discuss those policies from different angles as it relates to election. In short, topics should be about political impact of policy. And now, to the topic. This the first post, so I will keep it short.

Immigration reform is going to be on the front burner during the President's second term and we know that the President supports a pathway to citizenship. On Tuesday, the President will unveil his plans for comprehensive reform. We also know that a group of Senators has come up with an outline for reform. The winning coalition of the 2012 election was heavily fueled by Hispanic voters and a balanced approach to immigration reform helped mobilize those voters. The DREAM Act is one component to reform, but there has to be a solution for those immigrants that do not fall under it. The gist of the President's idea is for undocumented immigrants that are in good standing to pay a fine, learn English and go to the back of the line.

That seems reasonable and that might even be able to pass House of Representatives if (a gigantic if) the right mix of support from both parties can be put together. But, any Republican who votes for it potentially faces a primary for supporting such a plan, which the extreme right-wing calls “amnesty”. On the flip side, a lot of Republicans want to build better bridges with Hispanics for future elections and might support reform based on that, because after all, some Republicans are opportunists. As for Democrats, the House caucus is a lot more cohesive now, so I would expect the caucus to hold together on an immigration reform vote, but the Senate Democratic could prove to be much more divided.

The questions are, if reform is passed before the midterm elections, how much of an impact, if any, would it have on the results of those elections? And among Democratic members of Congress, who do you see being THE most cautious about supporting reform, due to worries about their own electoral security?

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jj32, bumiputera, MBishop1

    26, Male, CA-26, DK Elections Black Caucus Chair.

    by DrPhillips on Mon Jan 28, 2013 at 07:24:36 AM PST

  •  I could easily see it passing with 90% support (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MBishop1

    of Dems or more.  Barrow & McIntyre are probably not going to vote for it, as well as some Dems from moderate and overwhelmingly white districts, like perhaps DeFazio or Schrader here in Oregon.  Schrader is a farmer, though, and knows it's a priority for farmers, and his district is home to the biggest Hispanic communities in the state, so I doubt it.  Some will also vote against it from the left.  I don't think the vote will hurt more than a couple Dems.  I hope Republicans will have a harder time than our folks.

    ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

    by James Allen on Mon Jan 28, 2013 at 09:47:52 AM PST

    •  yeah (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      James Allen

      other than Barrow and McIntyre, and potentially a few ethnic urban Dems (Lynch, Lipinski, and a few others from the Northeast/Midwest), this will likely get all the House Dem votes (except maybe Grijalva and a few others defecting from the left).  Matheson should vote for it, as Utah and Mormons in general are pretty moderate on immigration relative to other issues.

      In the Senate, I could see 5+ defections, which will make the road to 60 much tougher.

      20, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
      politicohen.com
      Socially libertarian, moderate on foreign policy, immigration, and crime, liberal on everything else.
      UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city. -.5.38, -3.23

      by jncca on Mon Jan 28, 2013 at 10:42:36 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  The Republican proposals are weak and bound to get (0+ / 0-)

    weaker if anything is going to have a prayer at passing the House. I don't think Republicans will get much credit from Latino voters, particularly while members of their party will be screaming about it as the end of the world.

  •  I think the GOP will raise a little hell (0+ / 0-)

    But vote for a package that somehow gives undocumented folks some papers to legally stay in the country and work LEGALLY.

    I would settle for that minimum.

    It will be interesting to see the amount of push back and the language the GOP uses to fight back against Pres Obama on this issue.

    My preference is for comprehensive reform that gives ALL (non criminals) the right to work, live get in and out of the country as they please, and eventually citizenship.

    The owner of this site had an interesting spin on the political ramifications of Immigrations vis a via the Latino/Hispanic folks. He said the GOP are screwed irrespective of what they do. If they obstruct reform - they surely will continue down the path they are now on - loose every 4 yr Presidential election. Should they accede to reform they will be expanding the pool of Dem voters - so its a loose loose proposition for the GOP. No wonder they are busy designing nefarious schemes to dilute the electoral college system of elector allocation!

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