Instead, at least 17 GOP lawmakers have endorsed the petition that would force a floor vote, meaning eight more signatories would force the issue on immigration, assuming every House Democrat also backs the measure, The Hill reports.
Denham and another leader of the effort, Rep. Carlos Curbelo, R-Fla., met with House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., who has opposed their effort. If the petition, led by Rep. Carlos Curbelo (FL-26), receives 218 signatures, it will force a vote on H.
The liberal DREAM Act - Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors - would give the young immigrants, commonly known as "Dreamers", a chance at citizenship.
"Immigration has paralyzed this institution for too long, and we don't view this in any way undermining House leaders".
The rule would see all four competing immigration bills brought to the floor for debate and a vote, with the measure receiving the biggest vote margin in favor being the one that passes.
Members on both sides say they are frustrated by negotiations with the White House over border security and protection for immigrants who are in the country after being brought as children to the country illegally.
Congress has been unable to agree on how to respond to President Donald Trump's decision past year to end the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, which allowed some people brought to the US illegally as children to apply for protection from deportation. However it would also impose a range of border protection and enforcement measures, as well as cuts to legal immigration.
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Ryan hasn't formally weighed in, but he has for months called on House members to work on crafting immigration legislation through normal committee channels - a position reiterated Wednesday by Ryan spokeswoman AshLee Strong.
"I'm not a believer in discharge petitions because you're turning the floor over to Democrats", Scalise said, as reported in The Hill.
Signatories of the Discharge Petition include: Reps. Members of the majority party seldom back such petitions for that very reason, and few succeed.
The unconventional plan has been in the works for several months, but it rapidly gained support in April after Ryan announced that he plans to retire at the end of 2018. Ryan has tried unsuccessfully to round up enough support for the conservative alternative and has said he doesn't want votes on immigration legislation that President Donald Trump won't sign. A vote this summer could re-expose fissures within the party over protecting DACA recipients and deep disagreements with Trump over his demands for a wall along the border with Mexico. It would take steps toward toughening border security but not specifically authorize Trump's wall. "It would be an approach that would rely on mostly Democratic votes and some Republicans to pass their bill, and that's not the way to solve this problem".
Republican Majority Whip Steve Scalise of Louisiana hopes to stop 25 Republicans from signing the Queen of the Hill discharge petition.
The effort meant that a congressional drive to help young "Dreamer" immigrants that seemed to have lost steam earlier this year could be resurrected in the run-up to November's elections for House and Senate control.
"We never want to turn the floor over to the minority", he said.