Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart says momentum is growing in the House for action on immigration — despite some tough election-year rhetoric recently from fellow Republicans and what the Florida congressman considers ill-advised threats of unilateral action by President Barack Obama.

Diaz-Balart, a major player in the effort on Capitol Hill to produce a bipartisan overhaul of the nation’s immigration system, told CQ Roll Call Tuesday he has more supporters now than a month ago and still expects the Republican-controlled House to act before leaving town in August.

“Every day I’m getting more and more Republicans — conservatives — who are frankly approaching me saying, ‘How do we move forward?’ I feel very very confident that a majority — a strong majority — of Republicans want to finally tackle this system that everyone understands is broken — with some caveats,” he said in a phone interview. “Republicans are insisting that we take this step-by-step.”

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