Comprehensive immigration reform has been in the news for a while now. Yesterday, Senator Leahy (D-VT) chided the bipartisan negotiators and Obama for being too slow in putting out an immigration bill. He noted that the March deadline would not be met and now the Senate is talking about a pushed back April deadline for release of the bill.
Thus far, in the long journey of this bill, what do we know for sure? What everyone knows is that a bipartisan Gang of 8 Senators is working at a comprehensive immigration bill. We know the basic principles or the "4 pillars" of that bill are here. We also know that Obama also has a bill ready to go in case he is not pleased with the Senate bill. Meanwhile, another bipartisan group of 8 members of the House are also working on a bill that Speaker Boehener has called, a "pretty reasonable" bill.
Without even delving into the devilish details, as of today, there is still a lot we do not know. And the biggest thing we don't know is what the House bill will look like. While principles and pillars of the Senate and White House bill are known, we know virtually nothing about the 8 House members who by design have been meeting secretly and out of the limelight. That House bill is a wildcard since, admirably and shockingly, nothing has leaked about it. We may all be in for a major surprise. But the House has not even stated when it plans to release its bill. The most we know thus far might be in this article by TPM here. But although Rep. Guitierrez (D-IL) talks about the "overlap" between the House and Senate bill, I'm not seeing it. Rep. Goodlatte's (R-VA) comments about whether there would or would not be a path to citizenship for the undocumented was most opaque:
Once you have that status you can qualify like anyone else, it seems to me...Having a system where if you have an unlawful status and then you have another opportunity, whether it’s employment based or whether it’s family based to be able to legalize your status in the future those are good opportunities you can address.
I think the best you could say about these cryptic comments is that Goodlatte has not completely ruled out a path to citizenship.