Schumer predicts immigration reform will pass by July 4

Schumer is optimistic about immigration reform passing, but a majority of Americans do not share his rosy view

Published June 2, 2013 4:40PM (EDT)

Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.)
Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.)

A confident Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) told David Gregory on "Meet the Press" on Sunday that he is optimistic Congress, though dysfunctional as ever and bitterly divided over not-so-scandalous scandals, will still pull together to pass immigration reform.

“We’re going to put immigration on the [Senate] floor starting on June 10. I predict it will pass the Senate by July 4. We are hoping to get 70 votes, up to 70 votes, which means a lot of Republicans. And we’re willing to entertain amendments that don’t damage the core principles of the bill, but improve the bill – just as we did in [the Judiciary] committee.”

“These so-called scandals have not diverted us one iota” from immigration reform, he added.

Despite Schumer's rosy view of his colleague's ability to work together, a majority of voters do not believe Congress will pass the measure, even though 54 percent of Americans support immigration overhaul, as NBC News reports:

A new poll from Quinnipiac University shows that seven in ten registered voters think that Republicans and Democrats in Congress will not be able to work together to pass an immigration bill this year.

Hispanics and Democrats are slightly more optimistic, with about a third of each group saying that the bill will get to the president’s desk. But only 24 percent of voters overall said they believe that Congress can pass the legislation.

But while voters are pessimistic about its passage, the poll also showed that a majority supports the compromise bill’s foundational principle of a “path to citizenship.”  Fifty-four percent said undocumented immigrants living in the United States should be able to remain in the country and eventually apply for U.S. citizenship.  Twelve percent said undocumented individuals should be able to stay but should not be eligible to become citizens; 29 percent believe undocumented immigrants should not be able to stay in the U.S. at all.

By Katie McDonough

Katie McDonough is Salon's politics writer, focusing on gender, sexuality and reproductive justice. Follow her on Twitter @kmcdonovgh or email her at

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