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ICYMI: Rubio On Improving Immigration Reform Legislation

May 10, 2013 | Press Releases

Excerpt from Interview with Guy Benson on “The Hugh Hewitt Show”
Senator Marco Rubio
May 9, 2013

Guy Benson: “If I could, I’d like to move on to immigration just because the markup was starting today in the Senate Judiciary Committee of the bill that you’ve been involved with, the Gang of 8. Earlier this week one of your fellow Gang of 8 members, fellow Senator Dick Durbin, second in command to Harry Reid, he said ok yes we’ll go through an amendment process but – quote – the basic agreement will need to remain intact to allow for passage. Do you agree with that?”

Senator Marco Rubio: “Well what I agree with is that we came up with a structure that works well, but within that structure there are details that need to be and can be improved. And we saw that already today. I think there were 34 amendments considered, if I’m not mistaken, 22 of them were passed, almost half of them were Republican ideas, very good ones. They added judges to immigration courts, they ensured that the entire border – not just three sectors, the high-risk sectors – but all the sectors had to reach ninety percent effectiveness and apprehension, they closed a bunch of loopholes in terms of the accountability that the agencies have to have to Congress, reports that that the agencies are going to have to be coming back for oversight from the congressional branch. So what I can tell you is that today the immigration reform bill, as it stands, is better than it was last night. In essence, that’s what the amendment process has let us do.

“Now, are there people that have ideas about how to continue to improve it? I’m sure they do, and that’s why when we get to the floor I’m sure we’ll hear about that. But here’s the point. And here’s what everyone needs to remember. The vast majority of Americans – and conservatives – are saying the following. They are prepared to do immigration reform, but only if we can ensure there isn’t another wave of illegal immigration in the future. Everyone agrees that we’ve got it right on two of the points. We have E-Verify, it’s mandatory, it has to happen or no one gets a green card in the future. People are happy with that. We have an entry-exit tracking system, so that no one, so that it makes it harder for people to overstay their visas. That’s forty percent of the problem right there. People are happy with that. The last point people want to do is they want to make sure that whatever plan the Department of Homeland Security comes up with for the border is a good plan, a plan that will work. And what we’re working on now is, what can we put in this law to make sure that what they do with the five and half billion dollars that we give them works. And that’s what we’re working on together. Hopefully we can create a consensus around because if we do we’re going to have immigration reform and if we don’t, it’s going to be very hard to get it.”