I have long predicted that the central, yet in some ways least debated, issue in the Gang of 8 bill was the pathway to citizenship.

There was unanimity on the Democratic side, but not on the Republican side.  Democrats repeatedly threw down the gauntlet that no citizenship, no deal.

It appears that “immigration reform” is likely to fail in the House on that very issue according to Greg Sargent at WaPo:

The Morning Plum: House GOP won’t cross citizenship Rubicon:

There are reams of reporting out there on yesterday’s House GOP meeting about the way forward on immigration. But unless I’m missing something, one of the most basic questions about the debate still remains unanswered: Is there anything, under any circumstances, that can get House Republicans to embrace a path to citizenship later? …

In other words, the reporting confirms what we already know: That House Republicans don’t currently support citizenship, and remain more focused on border security, on initial legalization, and on the general political need to appear to be doing something to fix the broken immigration system.

But here’s what we still don’t know: Whether there are any conditions, ever, that could induce House Republicans to embrace citizenship at any point in this process.

As best as I can determine from all the reporting, the basic question of what House Republicans would require in order to support citizenship at any point remains unanswered. Which means we still simply don’t know if there is anything that can get them to support it, under any circumstances. For now, we should assume the answer is No.

And so, if we take John Boehner at his word — that nothing gets a vote in the House unless it has the support of a majority of House Republicans — then this means there remains no path to even getting a House vote on comprehensive immigration reform.

I’m not as confident as Sargent that “reform” including citizenship is toast.