Rubio Throws Weight Behind Immigration Bill

The Slatest
Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
April 14 2013 4:27 PM

Marco Rubio Throws Full Weight Behind Immigration Reform Bill

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Sen. Marco Rubio was on seven talk shows Sunday touting the immigration reform bill

Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images

He was once seen as the voice of caution. While the rest of the Gang of Eight often expressed optimism about the bipartisan immigration bill being drafted by the small group of Senators, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio seemed to be holding back, points out the New York Times. No longer. On Sunday, Rubio made an appearance on seven television talk shows to explain the bill and express confidence that the measure would be a “a net positive for the country, now and in the future.” In addition to appearing on the five major Sunday network political talk shows—CBS, NBC, ABC, CNN, and Fox—Rubio also appeared on Spanish-language Telemundo and Univision. The group of senators is expected to unveil the long-awaited bill Tuesday.

During his appearances, Rubio clearly tried to strike a middle ground, being careful to recognize conservative concerns about the reform bill, emphasizing that the legislation would not amount to amnesty. "What we have now isn't good for anybody," Rubio said on NBC. "What we have in place today, the status quo, is horrible for America." Rubio also emphasized that the first step of any immigration plan would have to be to tighten the borders.

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Rubio’s high profile push for the bill Sunday “is sure to stoke talks that he’s positioning for a run for president in 2016,” points out Politico. Predictably, whenever any interviewer tried to bring up the issue of Rubio’s political future, the senator was quick to brush off the question as irrelevant.

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Daniel Politi has been contributing to Slate since 2004 and wrote the "Today's Papers" column from 2006 to 2009. You can follow him on Twitter @dpoliti.

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