Despite the uncertain timetable, heated rhetoric and missed opportunities, supporters of immigration reform are cautiously optimistic that the House of Representatives, which is controlled by the Republican Party, is starting to come up with a game plan to have the legislation voted on by lawmakers this year.
Any action in the House of Representatives is currently on hold until Congress returns from its five-week August recess on September 9th. The break could, however, be crucial to the fate of the legislation, as representatives will be holding town hall meetings and attempting to gauge the mood of their constituents. Activists for immigration reform are intending to press their case with House lawmakers this month.
The break has come as other developments have given renewed hope to immigration reform supporters. Votes on a series of bills rather than the Senate’s comprehensive reform package appear likely by October, and a conference committee with the Senate might be completed early next year or as soon as December, prior to the inevitable paralysis of Capitol Hill, thanks to the mid-term elections.
Advocates for immigration reform say that there seems to be a genuine effort being made by Republican leaders such as Representative Paul Ryan and House Speaker John Boehner to find solutions for the troubling problems that are associated with the country’s broken border system, such as addressing the legal status of around 11 million undocumented immigrants who are already living in the United States.