Republicans In an Immigration Nightmare

Playbook: “Speaker Paul Ryan, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy and House Majority Whip Steve Scalise have spent this week trying to get Republicans to not sign a discharge petition that would open the House floor to a wide-ranging immigration debate. As of now, it’s been a failure.”

“After the trio spent the morning making the argument that this was not the path to go down, two Republicans — New York Rep. John Katko and Michigan Rep. Dave Trott — signed it anyway. That Republicans are openly defying their own leadership is relatively stunning. McCarthy has made the argument that an immigration vote could cost Republicans the majority. That clearly isn’t resonating.”

“Republicans are in a box. The discharge petition is a bad look for a lot of conservatives, who rightly think that the process will lead to a bill that will be carried mostly by Democrats. But it’s a central part of how the House works… Make no mistake this is a mess for the GOP.”

James Hohmann: “This open rebellion really is extraordinarily unusual. These renegade Republicans risk retribution from party chieftains by signing onto this petition over the strenuous public and private objections of leadership. But these lawmakers feel caught between a rock and a hard place: They also realize that they may lose reelection in November if they do nothing.”

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