One of the authors of the controversial Senate immigration reform bill, Florida Senator Marco Rubio, spoke to the Shark Tank and other reporters at the Capitol about the upcoming House immigration reform debate, where he believed that a set of principles that would be widely supported will probably come out of the House of Representatives.
Rubio’s ears were ringing as earlier in the day, Speaker John Boehner told reporters during a press conference at RNC headquarters, that a set of immigration principles would be discussed at the upcoming Republican congressional retreat. Rubio stated that the American people lacked confidence in the Obama administration, which is pushing blanket legalization in the immigration reform debate, to enforce any and all immigration enforcement measures.
Rubio was pummeled by grassroots activists for his change of position on immigration reform, when he co sponsored the Senate immigration bill, but now seems to be backing away from his own bill.
It’s still an Issue that needs to be solve, I think the better way to solve it at this point, given the lack of confidence people have in the federal government, is to do it in a way that will gain people’s confidence, and that is why I think a sequential approach is the better approach- it was originally what I had advocated for, it’s not the direction the Senate headed, but in essence, it sounds like that’s the direction everyone wants to head now.
Rubio added that if there was another debate on this issue, he would engage and “give ideas about how to move forward.”
My observation on it now is, that this is not a process today that’s conducive to some big piece of legislation, lack of confidence people have in the federal government has only eroded in the past 12 months, I think it will continue to erode.
And then he added:
The observation that I have made, which I made a couple months ago, and now everyone is agreeing with, is that this is an issue that needs to be handled sequentially, given the mood and sentiment around here and the lack of trust people have. That’s the only observation I couple months ago is that some central piece of legislation, one big piece of legislation just isn’t going to pass.
When questioned if his bill was “one big bill,” Rubio responded:
That was the direction the senate went, but if you back and read what I wrote in the WSJ last year, up to the time that debate began , I argued that a better approach , there is a difference between what you do and how you do it, those are two separate issues, and from a procedural standpoint my argument was, that if we could begin to do this in a way that was sequence so that people can gain confidence and momentum behind the idea I thought that that was a more realistic approach.
Rubio then reiterated that “the Senate decided” to go in the “big piece”of legislation direction.
Now the Senate decided to do it in one big piece of legislation, I didn’t think that was the best approach, But I chose to get involved with it because I wanted to influence, and hopefully make something positive happen. By nature, if I see a problem, I try to solve it.
EDITORS NOTE: This column and photo originally appeared on The Shark Tank.