Idaho’s Labrador: Let Obama take credit, but get immigration reform passed

Idaho GOP Congressman Raul Labrador told National Journal Daily that Republicans need to work with Democrats to enact immigration reform and not worry about who gets the political benefit.

“I think my party understands it’s not going to get any political capital from this, but it’s something we need to do,” Labrador of Idaho said in an interview published Wednesday.

Labrador Communications Director Michael Tate recirculated the article Wednesday afternoon.

Wrote reporter Fawn Johnson:

“Labrador favors some type of legalization for undocumented immigrants (but no special path to citizenship) and giving employers easier access to foreign labor. In other words, he’s ready to strike an immigration deal if liberals will work with him.

“That’s why Labrador was so impressed Tuesday when just such a liberal, Rep. Luis Gutierrez, D-Ill., went out of his way to praise the Republicans who control the Judiciary Committee for seeking input from a variety of stakeholders. ‘That hasn’t always been the case,’ Gutierrez said, referring to a long-held congressional practice in which the majority party stacks hearings with partisan witnesses.”

Johnson added that “Republicans must deal with Democrats and the White House to fix the immigration system. ‘Hispanics are not going to listen to us’ as long as Republicans are viewed as the obstacles to reform, he said.”



Dan Popkey came to Idaho in 1984 to work as a police reporter. Since 1987, he has covered politics and has reported on 25 sessions of the Legislature. Dan has a bachelor's in political science from Santa Clara University and a master's in journalism from Columbia University. He was a Congressional Fellow of the American Political Science Association and a Journalism Fellow at the University of Michigan. A former page in the U.S. House of Representatives, he graduated Capitol Page High School in 1976. In 2007, he led the Statesman’s coverage of the Sen. Larry Craig sex scandal, which was one of three Pulitzer Prize finalists in breaking news. In 2003, he won the Ted M. Natt First Amendment award from the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Association for coverage of University Place, the University of Idaho’s troubled real estate development in Boise. Dan helped start the community reading project "Big Read." He has two children in college and lives on the Boise Bench with an old gray cat.

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