Depending upon which media outlet you read, President Obama asserted that comprehensive immigration reform is or is not definitely (not) coming this year (maybe).
The Politico logs a headline that reads: “President Obama: Immigration bill coming this year.” On the same day, CQ Homeland Security asserts: “Obama Says Immigration Overhaul Will Slide to 2010.”
The confusion can’t really be blamed on the President. The confusion seems to creep in from the personal — what, hopes? confusion? — of the different media outlets.
Credit CQ Homeland with getting it more right.
As the Politico story acknowledges, somewhat confusingly — Obama said he expects to have a draft of an immigration bill by the end of the year, which is kind of like telling somebody the check’s in the mail.
Under fire from immigration reform supporters who say he’s not moving fast enough, President Barack Obama said Monday he expects to have a draft immigration bill in Congress by year’s end — but that lawmakers wouldn’t begin to seriously debate the issue until next year.
He acknowledged that the fight for comprehensive reform would be difficult, saying, “Am I going to be able to snap my fingers and get this done? No. . . . There are going to be demagogues out there who try to suggest that any form of pathway for legalization for those who are already in the United States is unacceptable.”
Meanwhile, the reporter for CQ Homeland Security is a little more straightforward:
Immigration reform isn’t off the president’s agenda, but it does seem to be off the table for this year, according to statements President Obama made at the summit with the presidents of Canada and Mexico Monday.
Obama said Monday that while he expected to see draft language for a comprehensive immigration bill in circulation by the end of the year, he did not expect lawmakers to “start acting” on the bill until next year — after completing work on health care, climate change and a financial regulatory overhaul.
“I’ve got a lot on my plate, and it’s very important for us to sequence these big initiatives in a way where they don’t all just crash at the same time,” Obama said.