Last week House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi once again offered her commitment for comprehensive immigration reform, which has the support of her Republican colleague Lincoln Díaz-Balart. He recently announced his retirement, but he hopes that Pelosi will deliver on her pledge.
It's easier said than done.
Pelosi and the House Democratic leadership have said that the Senate must act first.
But those who wait for the chairman of the Senate Immigration Panel, New York Democrat Charles Schumer, to make a proposal -- he wants something bipartisan -- have had to look for a chair because standing up would tire us us. The wait started with his promise last year, in September, for Labor Day.
We understand very clearly that whatever he comes up with will be dictated by political circumstances.
Barack Obama proposed and promised not only immigration reform but health care reform and many other things in the midst of an economic downturn and attacked every step of the way by both Republicans and Democrats. If you should ask any Democrat, especially those in the House, they will say that it is Obama who has presented himself weakly to the Senate where much more advanced proposals from the House have gotten bogged down.
The Senate, since mid-February, continues to be bogged down in a fight over health care reform, and now by an economic stimulus plan and a jobs bill. With everything, the pro immigrant groups continue to pressure and remind the leaders of the promises formed in 2008, and that there are mid-term elections his year.
They address immigration reform with a series of political calculations, many of them foolish, which obstruct what should have been a good opportunity for something socially positive, to help our economy, and to accumulate political points within the community and a voting bloc, the Latinos, whcih could help maintain majorities, as is the case with the Democrats.
Pelosi, the Democrat, says she wants immigration reform. Díaz-Balart, the Republican, says he wants to work this year so that Pelosi can deliver.
In theory, it sounds very good. Showing political bravery and valor to go beyond the words and turn theory into practice would be much better.