POLITICS
07/07/2013 09:29 am ET Updated Jul 08, 2013

George W. Bush: Immigration Reform Making Progress In Congress

WASHINGTON — Former President George W. Bush says it looks like an immigration overhaul has a chance to pass Congress and he says its' important to fix "a broken system."

The Senate has passed legislation that combines the promise of citizenship for those living in the United States unlawfully with increased border security. But that approach seems to be a nonstarter in the GOP-led House.

Still, Bush tells ABC's "This Week" that it looks like lawmakers are making "some progress."

"I think it's very important to fix a broken system, to treat people with respect, and have confidence in our capacity to assimilate people," Bush said. "It's a very difficult bill to pass because there's a lotta moving parts. And the legislative process is -- can be ugly. And -- but it looks like they're making some progress."

Bush was unable to get an overhaul passed when he was president, a challenge the former president acknowledged as frustrating.

"I mean, I understand sometimes you get-- legislation through that you want," Bush said. "I was also frustrated we didn't pass social security reform. I thought the plan I'd laid out on both was reasonable. But sometime, it takes time for some of these complex issues to evolve. And, looks like immigration, you know, has a chance to pass."

Asked whether the GOP would suffer if immigration legislation died, Bush said the reason to pass it isn't to bolster the Republican Party but to fix the system.

He said, "Good policy yields good politics as far as I'm concerned."

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