Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio prodded on the efforts of a secretive, bipartisan House immigration overhaul working group Tuesday, but he declined to endorse any specific legislative ideas on the subject.
Speaking at a news conference taking place as the House Judiciary Committee held its first immigration hearing of the year, Boehner lauded the bipartisan nature of the talks, particularly naming Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., who has been involved on the Senate side.
“I want to applaud Sen. Rubio for his effort, the bipartisan effort in the House. And what I want to do is encourage both sides of the Capitol and both parties to continue talking to one another so we can resolve this issue in a bipartisan manner,” Boehner said.
Still, when asked whether he agrees with Rubio’s idea that immigration legislation should include a pathway to citizenship for some illegal immigrants, Boehner skirted the question, saying only that this is a “very difficult” issue.
He also said that he is in no hurry to push legislation, even if the Senate passes an immigration bill first.
“This is not about being in a hurry. This is about trying to get it right on behalf of the American people and those who are suffering under an immigration system that doesn’t work very well for anybody,” he said.
A Boehner staffer confirmed that he has not been briefed on the specifics of what the House working group is discussing.
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., right, hugs Harold Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters, after the Congressman spoke at the IAFF's Legislative Conference General Session at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, March 9, 2015. The day featured addresses by members of Congress and Vice President Joe Biden.