Boehner says blaming GOP on immigration just teasing
WASHINGTON — House Speaker John Boehner told Republican lawmakers on Tuesday he was just teasing them when he lampooned their reluctance to act on immigration legislation, insisting that he blames President Obama for inaction on the issue, not the GOP.
“You tease the ones you love, right? But some people misunderstood what I had to say,” Boehner said after a closed-door meeting with the House GOP where he offered the explanation. “I can rib people just a little too much sometimes. This wouldn't be the first time.”
The comments in question were made at a Rotary Club lunch in Ohio last week when Boehner said Republican House members don't want to take on immigration because it's too difficult. He imitated them whining in high-pitched protest, “Ohh, don't make me do this ... ohh, this is too hard.” Some conservatives took offense, saying Boehner should be keeping the focus on Obama. Some Republicans say it's largely the president's fault that comprehensive immigration legislation, including border security and eventual citizenship for millions, remains stalled in the House 10 months after Senate passage. They say they can't trust Obama because of his record of taking steps by executive action.
Democrats, meanwhile, saw signs of renewed hope for immigration legislation in Boehner's comments blaming the House GOP, though Boehner's aides downplayed any such suggestion.
Asked about Boehner's remarks, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said, “I'm glad he's complaining about his members for a change so I don't have to.”
In his remarks on Tuesday, Boehner put the focus back on the president. “I wanted to make sure the members understood that the biggest impediment we have in moving immigration reform is that the American people don't trust the president to enforce or implement the law that we may or may not pass,” Boehner said.
With Congress back in session after a two-week recess, Boehner said that discussions are ongoing about a way forward. But any window for congressional action this year is rapidly closing, and chances remain slim.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- 911 dispatcher hung up on caller before wounded teen’s death in June
- Defense memo reveals plan to protect transgender troops
- New TSA administrator vows training to address security gaps
- Compromise keeps highway accounts funded
- Calif. oil slick expected to dissipate
- Obama hopes he has enough votes to sustain a potential veto of Iran nuke deal; pro-Israel groups aim to stop it
- Cincy officer indicted on murder charge in fatal shooting of motorist
- House approves bill targeting VA staffers
- Planned Parenthood requests expert study
- Georgia school returns Cosby’s money
- L.A. bans handgun, rifle magazines that hold more than 10 rounds