The GOP talking point on why House Republicans will not move forward with an immigration overhaul this year has emerged: Republicans don’t trust President Barack Obama to implement a policy rewrite as intended.
The line was first delivered Thursday morning by Speaker John A. Boehner during his weekly press conference with reporters. “The American people, including many of my members, don’t trust that the reform that we’re talking about will be implemented as intended to be,” Boehner said.
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor expanded upon that point Thursday afternoon with Minority Whip Steny H. Hoyer during their weekly colloquy.
“I think the fundamental issue right now is there is doubt cast on this White House, this president, this administration’s willingness to implement the laws, given the track record we have seen on laws like Obamacare and others,” Cantor said.
The Virginia Republican affirmed that he believes the immigration system is “broken” and “there needs to be reform.”
“But before we can even get there,” Cantor said, “there needs to be some trust, there needs to be some trust built by this president with this Congress, because it seems that the track record is full of examples of the White House and the administration picking and choosing in terms of the regulations, the laws and the provisions that it wants implemented.”
Hoyer said “in light of the fact” that there is acknowledgment the immigration system is broken, “I don’t place much stock in this, what I would call, a rationalization of trust.”
The Maryland Democrat said Obama has enforced immigration laws. He said there were fewer people who had come over the border illegally and more people deported in the first five years of the Obama administration than during the entirety of George W. Bush’s presidency.
“So with all due respect to this, frankly, trying to distract us on this trust issue, this is not a trust issue; this is an issue of law,” Hoyer said.