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January 31, 2013

Reid optimistic about prospects for immigration overhaul

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is optimistic that immigration law can be changed.

He was asked Thursday at his news conference why 2013 is different from 2007, when Reid and others tried to overhaul the system but were unsuccessful.

"My experience on major pieces of legislation in the years I've been in Congress -- it's a process.  Rarely do you solve a big issue legislatively at the first go-round," the Nevada Democrat said.

It didn't get done in 2007, he explained, "because, first of all, we didn't get Republican votes. This time we're going to get some Republican votes."

Perhaps the biggest difference, he said, is "I think there's been a change with the American people.  The American people now acknowledge, as I said in my statement to everybody here -- Democrats, Republican, independents -- want this -- issues resolved. It's an issue that's important to individual human beings, but it's also an issue that's important to our economy.  So it's a process, and we're going to get it done.

"This is -- this is the time we're going to get it done," Reid said.


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"Planet Washington" covers politics and government. It is written by journalists in McClatchy's Washington Bureau.

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