Immigration Reform Gets A Boost From Kelly Ayotte
The Senate immigration bill got a significant boost today with the announcement that New Hampshire Senator Kelly Ayotte will back the bill as debate begins:
Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) on Sunday said she will support the immigration reform bill proposed by the bipartisan Senate “Gang of Eight.”
“I have looked at this carefully,” Ayotte said on CBS’s “Face the Nation.” “This is a thoughtful bipartisan solution to a tough problem. And so that’s why I’m going to support it.”
Ayotte’s support is significant because it means the bill — as long as it gets the support of all or most of the 54 members of the Democratic caucus in the Senate — is approaching the 60 votes it would need to override a filibuster.
That’s assuming, of course, that in addition to Ayotte it gets the support of the four Republicans who belong to the Gang of Eight. But one of them — Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) — has suggested he won’t support the bill unless it includes more border security.
A sixth Republican, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), voted for the bill in the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Ayotte also discuses her decision to support the bill in an Op-Ed:
As a nation of immigrants, we must remember that we’re all descended from people who came here from somewhere else in search of a better life. In generations past, immigration has enriched our nation culturally and economically. We are all heirs to the dreams and hard work of the immigrants who helped build this country – neighborhood by neighborhood.
But the broken immigration system we have now is unworthy of a great nation. It’s time for Washington to tackle this problem head on. If we miss this opportunity, our illegal immigration problems will only get much worse and we will not realize the full economic potential of America.
Good news for the cause of immigration reform to be sure, but the biggest problem for this bill has always been in the House, not the Senate.