The Hill (02/22/13) Russell Berman
A bipartisan House group is making “really good progress” on immigration reform legislation despite missing a target date for an agreement, a top Republican participant says. “I am now more sure than ever that we’re going to have a bipartisan bill,” says longtime advocate of comprehensive reform, Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL). “We’re making incredible progress.”
Diaz-Balart is a member of a House group that includes more than a half dozen liberal and conservative lawmakers who have been working for years behind closed doors on an immigration overhaul. As talks accelerated in recent months, people involved in the effort said the group had hoped to announce an agreement around President Obama’s State of the Union address. Now aides say that while the talks are ongoing, participants are not setting a deadline or target date for releasing legislation. Diaz-Balart says that the group hopes to unveil a bill soon but, as would be expected with any sensitive effort of this magnitude, lawmakers do not want to go public prematurely.