A conservative sophomore congressman repeated his projection that House Speaker John Boehner would lose his leadership post if he brings immigration reform to the floor for a vote.
Speaking to reporters after a discussion billed as "Conversations with Conservatives," Rep. Raul Labrador said Wednesday that Boehner would be defying the House majority if he pushed a vote on immigration. He said opposition within the House GOP to taking up immigration reform is at 80 percent. The discussions are sponsored by the Heritage Foundation, a conservative organization.
"If he brings this to the floor, it's because he's not listening to the majority of the Republican conference," Labrador said, repeating similar comments he made Tuesday to CQ's Roll Call.
But Labrador, a Tea Party Republican from Idaho, said if Boehner loses his speakership, it would be by "natural selection."
"There is no cabal out there." Labrador said. "I think the Speaker had a pretty good year last year. I just think this would be a terrible mistake, a political miscalculation and that's why I don't think he's going to do it."
Labrador added that he thinks immigration reform could be done in early 2015, but "right now we don't need this internal (GOP) fight."
First published February 5 2014, 12:54 PM
Suzanne Gamboa is a senior writer for NBCNews.com. She started in January 2014. Gamboa is responsible for editing, reporting and writing stories about Latinos and how the population's expansion is reshaping the U.S. Gamboa joined NBCNews.com from NBC Latino, where she was political editor, responsible for writing, editing and assigning political coverage.
Prior to her role at NBC Latino, Gamboa had worked 13 years in the Washington, D.C. bureau of The Associated Press, where she covered politics, immigration and border and U.S.-Mexico issues, veterans, the Texas congressional delegation and most recently race and ethnicity, a beat she helped build. She also worked at the AP in Texas and at the Austin American-Statesman.
Gamboa lives in Washington, D.C.