We’re over one week into the August Recess and with each passing day some kind of immigration reform is looking more and more likely. This is not to say reform advocates should sit back and count their eggs. Progress has only been gained because advocates have been persistent, and while recent comments from GOP lawmakers give us reason to hope, many Republican representatives remain entrenched in opposition. Fortunately, reform advocates have identified the house republicans who are ‘gettable’ and focused their time and resources accordingly, showing supporters are both persistent and efficient.
Moreover, supporters run the gamut of the political and social spectrum. Evangelicals, labor leaders, small business owners, high tech CEOs, law enforcement officers and nuns have swarmed town hall meetings and canvassed the country pushing for a bill that will recognize the human rights of immigrants, keep families intact, and improve the economy. With such a wide range of support, the prospect of reform is looking good.
Then again there are plenty of Steve Kings in the country, although that might not be such a bad thing. The odd, offensive representative from Iowa, who consistently makes ridiculous remarks about immigrants and refuses to apologize, has quickly become the face of the opposition. And if Steve King is the face of the opposition, the opposition is becoming less attractive with every offensive analogy he makes. According to Frank Sharry, the reform champion who directs the advocacy group America’s voice, Steve King may be doing more to advance reform than any GOP rep in the house.