News / USA

US Business Leader Confident Boehner Will Seek Immigration Reform

FILE - Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, with House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., right, walks to a meeting of House Republicans at the Capitol in Washington.FILE - Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, with House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., right, walks to a meeting of House Republicans at the Capitol in Washington.
x
FILE - Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, with House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., right, walks to a meeting of House Republicans at the Capitol in Washington.
FILE - Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, with House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., right, walks to a meeting of House Republicans at the Capitol in Washington.
Reuters
The head of the biggest U.S. business group, a traditional ally of Republicans, said on Thursday that he remains confident that the top Republican in Congress will push to enact comprehensive immigration reform.
 
Donohue said he supports Boehner's decision to take a step-by-step approach, with smaller measures to fix the nation's broken immigration system, as opposed to the broader, comprehensive approach favored by Democrat leaders in the Senate.
 
“I believe it will get done,” Donohue said at a news conference attended by business, religious and law enforcement leaders, all of whom echoed his determination and optimism.
 
A landmark bill to bolster border security, help business get needed workers and provide a pathway to U.S. citizenship for up to 11 million undocumented immigrants won Senate approval in June.
 
However, thus far, the House has passed only a handful of limited bills, most dealing with enforcement and none providing a pathway to U.S. citizenship.
 
Donohue promised to help Boehner get the votes to pass a series of bills to provide comprehensive reform, including a pathway to citizenship.
 
He said such legislation would be good for business, labor and the country, and that he expects final congressional approval in the first half of next year.
 
“We're not going away,” said Donohue, whose business group, along with organized labor, helped craft the Senate bill. “We're just getting warmed up.”
 
Boehner drew fire on Wednesday when he said that the House will not negotiate with the Senate to resolve differences between the Senate bill and what the House ends up passing.
 
“We have made it clear that we are going to move on a common sense, step-by-step approach,” the speaker said, repeating his opposition to the Senate legislation.
 
“We have no intention of ever going to conference on the Senate bill,” he continued.
 
Some read Boehner's comments to mean that he was walking away from comprehensive reform.
 
Donohue, whose Chamber of Commerce represents more than 3 million businesses, said he didn't see it that way.
 
“I'm not upset with Boehner,” Donohue said, adding that he believes Congress will end up doing what needs to be done to overhaul the U.S. immigration system.
 
“We will get there,” he said. “It doesn't matter to me what music they play for the dance.”
 
Objection to Pathway
 
The Chamber of Commerce, and much of the business community, has long been allies of Republicans, largely because of the party's anti-tax, anti-regulatory positions.
 
Yet many Republicans have balked at the Senate bill because of the pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants.
 
Critics say the pathway would provide “amnesty” to law breakers and encourage more illegal immigration.
 
Supporters disagree. Instead, they argue, it would bring millions of illegal immigrants out of the shadows and end their exploitation.
 
Donohue said he remains confident Congress will enact a comprehensive immigration overhaul, largely because polls show more than 70 percent of Americans back it.

You May Like

Turkey: No Ransom Paid for Release of Hostages Held by IS Militants

President Erdogan hails release of hostages as diplomatic success but declines to be drawn on whether their release freed Ankara's hand to take more active stance against insurgents More

Audio Sierra Leone Ends Ebola Lockdown

Health ministry says it has reached 75 percent of its target of visiting 1.5 million homes to locate infected, educate population about virus More

US Pivot to Asia Demands Delicate Balancing Act

As tumult in Middle East distracts Obama administration, efforts to shift American focus eastward appear threatened More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Saving Global Fish Stocks Starts in the Kitcheni
X
September 22, 2014 11:42 AM
With an estimated 90 percent of the world’s larger fish populations having already vanished, a growing number of people in the seafood industry are embracing the concept of sustainable fishing and farming practices. One American marine biologist turned restaurateur in Thailand is spreading the word among fellow chefs and customers. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Saving Global Fish Stocks Starts in the Kitchen

With an estimated 90 percent of the world’s larger fish populations having already vanished, a growing number of people in the seafood industry are embracing the concept of sustainable fishing and farming practices. One American marine biologist turned restaurateur in Thailand is spreading the word among fellow chefs and customers. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video For West Ukraine City, Conflict Far Away Yet Near

The western Ukrainian city of Lviv prides itself on being both physically and culturally close to Western Europe. The Russian-backed separatists in the eastern part of the country are 1,200 kilometers away, and seemingly even farther away in their world view. Still, as VOA’s Al Pessin reports, the war is having an impact in Lviv.
Video

Video Chinese Admiral Key in China’s Promotion of Sea Links

China’s President last week wrapped up landmark visits to India, Sri Lanka and Maldives, part of a broader campaign to promote a new “Maritime Silk Road” in Asia. The Chinese government’s promotion efforts rely heavily on the country’s best-known sailor, a 15th century eunuch named Zheng He. VOA's Bill Ide reports from the sailor’s hometown in Yunnan on the effort to promote China’s future by recalling its past.
Video

Video Experts Fear Ebola Outbreak ‘Beyond Our Capability to Contain’

Each day brings with it new warnings about the deadly Ebola outbreak already blamed for killing more than 2,600 people across West Africa. And while countries and international organizations like the United Nations are starting to come through on promises of help for those most affected, the unprecedented speed with which the virus has spread is raising questions about the international response. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from Washington.
Video

Video Natural Gas Export Plan Divides Maryland Town

A U.S. power company that has been importing natural gas now wants to export it. If approved, its plant in Lusby, Maryland, would likely be the first terminal on the United States East Coast to export liquefied natural gas from American pipelines. While some residents welcome the move because it will create jobs, others oppose it, saying the expansion could be a safety and environmental hazard. VOA’s Deborah Block examines the controversy.
Video

Video Difficult Tactical Battle Ahead Against IS Militants in Syria

The U.S. president has ordered the military to intensify its fight against the Islamic State, including in Syria. But how does the military conduct air strikes in a country that is not a U.S. ally? VOA correspondent Carla Babb reports from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Iran, World Powers Seek Progress in Nuclear Talks

Iran and the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany, known as the P5 + 1, have started a new round of talks on Iran's nuclear program. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports that as the negotiations take place in New York, a U.S. envoy is questioning Iran's commitment to peaceful nuclear activity.
Video

Video Alibaba Shares Soar in First Day of Trading

China's biggest online retailer hit the market Friday -- with its share price soaring on the New York Stock Exchange. The shares were priced at $68, but trading stalled at the opening, as sellers held onto their shares, waiting for buyers to bid up the price. More on the world's biggest initial public offering from VOA’s Bernard Shusman in New York.
Video

Video Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land Called Calais

The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching Europe. And for those forunate enough to reach a place like Calais, France, only find that their problems aren't over. Lisa Bryant has the story.
Video

Video Westgate Siege Anniversary Brings Back Painful Memories

One year after it happened, the survivors of the terror attack on Nairobi's Westgate Shopping Mall still cannot shake the images of that tragic incident. For VOA, Mohammed Yusuf tells the story of victims still waiting for the answer to the question 'how could this happen?'
Video

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

The International Whaling Commission, meeting in Slovenia, has voted to uphold a court ruling banning Japan from hunting whales in the Antarctic Ocean. Conservationists hailed the ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid