Update, 9:30 pm, November 13:

At 10:35 am on Wednesday, November 13, Politico reported that House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), had carried out the execution and burial of comprehensive immigration reform. See Boehner dashes hopes of immigration talks, by Seung Min Kim and Jake Sherman.

Kim and Sherman write as follows:

"House Republicans will not negotiate over the Senate's immigration reform bill, Speaker John Boehner said, dealing another blow to the chances of an overhaul being signed this year.

'Frankly, I'll make clear, we have no intention of ever going to conference on the Senate bill', Boehner told reporters Wednesday morning."

Politico continues, in what can only be considered a major understatement:

"The remarks are a major setback for immigration reform advocates."

And indeed they are a "setback". It is a little like saying that the deceased is not in good health on the way home from attending the person's funeral.

The same article also reports that just before the press conference, Boehner was approached in his favorite breakfast diner by two young girls, Carmen Lima, 13 and Jennifer Martinez, 16, who asked him how he would feel if he had to tell a child of his at the age of ten that he was being deported and never coming back.

Boehner was said to have replied: "That wouldn't be good" and to have told them that he is "trying to find a way to get this thing done".

How? By bringing the body he has just buried back to life?

It is a very sad day for America when the Speaker of the US House of Representatives has to be ashamed to face two teenage children. It is even sadder that, if they had been speaking to the President Obama inside the Oval Office, he would have had to be even more ashamed than Boehner.

Boehner, so far, has deported exactly zero individuals, about 1.3 million less than the president.

The following is my original post:

Media coverage of the death of immigration reform, impending or already accomplished, continues. This is despite the optimism expressed by some reform advocates to the effect that the words of the Roman poet Horace which I have quoted several times previously: Non omnis moriar ("I will not completely die") still apply to CIR.

An "optimistic" view that immigration reform can still be saved (before it breathes its last) appears in a November 12 Politico report, Biden: Don't let immigration die like gun control


The article reports that in a phone call, Biden asked pro-reform faith leaders to encourage reform-friendly House Republicans and those who are still sitting on the fence as follows:

"Give them a little bit of love and appeal to their better angels, the better angels of those who are still on the fence to take a politically courageous decision."

However, the very comparison of immigration reform to gun control, accurate as it is, shows how difficult it will be to pass reform in the current right wing extremist dominated House.

As I have argued in several previous posts, Biden's boss, President Obama, may well be the one who has to make the politically courageous decision, namely to put through de facto legalization for 11 million immigrants through executive action. Will he have the guts to do? Will America's Deporter in Chief have enough good will toward immigrants?

Meanwhile, on the obituary side of the immigration reform story, The Hill began a 2-part series on November 12 with the cheery title: How Immigration Died: Part 1.

According to this lengthy, convoluted article, pro-reform Senate Democrats had a hand in frustrating the work of the now-defunct House "Gang of Eight" in trying to draft its own comprehensive reform bill, because such a bill would have been to the right of the bill that the Senate Gang of Eight was working on and which ultimately passed the upper chamber.

I notice that the second installment of this series, due to appear on November 13, will be entitled: "The Republicans pull out".

What? The Republicans had something to do with the dissolution of the bipartisan House "Gang of Eight" (later to become what I have called the "Magnificent Seven" after Tea Party Republican and former immigration lawyer Rep. Raul Labrador of Idaho pulled out)?

Amazing! Republican bigots sabotaging immigration reform in the House? Will wonders never cease?

Both Biden's remarks and The Hill's "inside story" make good reading, no doubt. And they also, each in its own way, entirely miss the point. The point is that House Speaker John Boehner has read the political tea leaves and decided that his tenure as the House leader will be over if he allows any kind of immigration reform bill to come to the floor for a vote.

Correction: I meant "political Tea Party leaves".