Updated 9:15 a.m. | Speaker John A. Boehner says it's still time to do an immigration overhaul, and believes "absolutely" he can convince the GOP to do it.
"I said the day after the 2012 election it was time to do immigration reform. I meant it then and I mean it today," the Ohio Republican said on ABC News' "This Week." When exactly he might schedule a vote isn't clear. Boehner said the nation first needs border security. He pointed to the child migrant crisis as preventing passage of an immigration bill earlier this year.
"We had a flood of children coming across the border once again proving that no good immigration bill can pass until we have real border security," he told George Stephanopoulos.
"Big things in Washington take bipartisan majorities. Issue of immigration, only way to do it, and frankly the right way to do it, is to do it in a broad bipartisan way," Boehner said.
"And you think you can bring your party along on that?"
"Absolutely," Boehner answered.
Boehner, of course, has expressed confidence on immigration at various points over the last two years, but the only measures that have come to the floor would roll back President Barack Obama's executive actions granting deportation relief to young illegal immigrants brought to the United States as minors.
As he has done previously, Boehner also warned against Obama expanding his executive actions on immigration, which the White House has said he plans to do by the end of the year.
"That would poison the well," Boehner said. "And I’ve told the president this directly: If you want to get immigration reform done, and you want to get it right, don’t do things that will poison the well."
Our whip count of the GOP leadership's immigration principles earlier this year found just 18 Republicans willing to publicly embrace them .
Obama is planning to dramatically expand deportation relief after the midterm elections — after Boehner told him earlier this year that the House would not vote on an immigration bill. Boehner also suggested that in the next Congress, the president could work with Republicans on a tax reform package and a big highway bill, while also pointing to the Keystone pipeline and the repeal of the medical device tax as items a Republican Senate could pass.
In the same interview, Boehner also backed a ground war if needed to destroy ISIS .
You can read the transcript here .
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