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There are two different electorates in the United States. There is the electorate that votes in the off-year elections and the electorate that votes in the Presidential elections. The issue of immigration reform is much more important to the presidential electorate than it is to the off-year electorate.
I think that thoughtful Republicans may be coming to the conclusion that they are destined to be a regionally based party which can control the legislative branch of government and a lot of state-houses, but not the presidency. If they are coming to that conclusion, which they will never admit publicly, then scuttling immigration reform makes much more political sense.