Paul Ryan: I support Marco Rubio on immigration

posted at 8:11 pm on January 14, 2013 by Allahpundit

What’s the most interesting part of this? That he’s reaching out to touch a third-rail issue, or that he’s ducking behind one of his biggest rivals for the 2016 nomination to do it?

Go figure that a guy who was part of a ticket that lost by nearly 50 points among Latinos is eager to rehab on immigration:

Senator Rubio is exactly right on the need to fix our broken immigration system. I support the principles he’s outlined: modernization of our immigration laws; stronger security to curb illegal immigration; and respect for the rule of law in addressing the complex challenge of the undocumented population. Our future depends on an immigration system that works.

He’s not just paying lip service to the issue. Dem Rep. Luis Gutierrez, who once said that his only loyalty is to the immigrant community, met with Ryan last month to talk immigration and had encouraging things to say:

“What we did was just kind of catch up,” Gutierrez told me. Ryan and Gutierrez decided they want to “explore opportunities to work together.” Gutierrez, one of the House leaders on immigration issues — who has kept constant pressure on President Barack Obama to do more — is crossing the aisle as Republicans need very much to woo the fast growing number of Hispanic voters — who in large part rejected the Romney/Ryan ticket…

Not well known, Gutierrez noted, is that he and Ryan share some history: In 2005, Ryan was a co-sponsor of bipartisan and bi-cameral comprehensive immigration reform legislation carried in the House by Gutierrez and Rep. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.). “It wasn’t like it was a long line of Republicans supporting it. He’s always supported immigration reform,” Gutierrez said.

The inspiration for Ryan’s Facebook post is the glowing WSJ piece over the weekend heralding Rubio’s “charge up the middle” on immigration. But Mark Krikorian’s right: There’s little difference between Rubio’s basic principles for reform and the principles laid out by the White House in that recent NYT piece about their big upcoming push for an immigration bill. Here’s Rubio:

Politically hardest is the question of the up to 12 million illegals currently here. Mr. Rubio’s proposal allows for adults who overstayed their visa or sneaked in to come into the open.

“Here’s how I envision it,” he says. “They would have to come forward. They would have to undergo a background check.” Anyone who committed a serious crime would be deported. “They would be fingerprinted,” he continues. “They would have to pay a fine, pay back taxes, maybe even do community service. They would have to prove they’ve been here for an extended period of time. They understand some English and are assimilated. Then most of them would get legal status and be allowed to stay in this country.”

Legal status could lead to citizenship eventually, although Rubio doesn’t specify how long eventually might be. Now here’s the White House plan:

The White House will argue that its solution for illegal immigrants is not an amnesty, as many critics insist, because it would include fines, the payment of back taxes and other hurdles for illegal immigrants who would obtain legal status, the officials said.

The president’s plan would also impose nationwide verification of legal status for all newly hired workers; add visas to relieve backlogs and allow highly skilled immigrants to stay; and create some form of guest-worker program to bring in low-wage immigrants in the future.

As I recall, the bills championed by Bush and McCain six years ago also had provisions about fines, back taxes, etc. Any comprehensive plan has to: An unconditional amnesty would be too politically toxic to pass, but so would a bill that relegated illegals to perpetual second-class status by categorically refusing to grant eventual citizenship to them. Whatever ends up passing Congress will have a multi-step amnesty as part of it, which should be perfectly fine with Democrats. If they need to wait a few years for all of those new votes to show up at the polls, that’s okay; if they can get a bill passed and then chip away at it with court challenges in order to speed up the citizenship process, even better. The interesting thing here is why Ryan’s so eager to hug Rubio on it. I assume it’s because it’s arguably the least risky move he can make ahead of 2016. If he comes out strong for “enforcement first” and rejects any amnesty talk until there have been measurable improvements in border security, he’ll be hammered for compounding the GOP’s problems with Latinos, which makes him theoretically unviable in the general election. If he does the opposite and emerges on Rubio’s left by pushing a less conditional amnesty, now he’s suddenly vulnerable in the primary as a RINO. He knows that Rubio’s destined to be the Republican face of whatever happens in Congress and he also knows that conservatives will tread lightly in criticizing Rubio for whatever position he ends up taking lest they slip even further with Latinos in 2016, so Ryan’s doing the prudent thing — letting Rubio serve as lightning rod while he signals that he’s at least as open-minded and reformist on this issue as his rival is.


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Comment pages: 1 2 3

The only thing “broken” about our immigration system is that the traitorous politicians are not doing their sworn duty to defend the nation by securing the borders and upholding the laws.

It is a tandem gang of pimps- Dem and GOP- selling out the country for a mess of pottage transitory power.

profitsbeard on January 15, 2013 at 12:28 AM

Why do so many posters here (and their GOP favorite candidates???) assume we must offer some kind of amnesty for illegal aliens in order to win elections??

READ THIS POLL. (The only one I have ever seen that offers all 3 options).

40% of Hispanics favor attrition through enforcement, NOT amnesty!!

Only 54% of Hispanics favor amnesty.

A few political truths:

1. The 54% are already Democrats.

2. The GOP cannot out-pander the Democrats for this 54%.

Why does the GOP (and many posters here) ignore the 40% and assume all Hispanics favor amnesty?

If we appeal to the 40% and KEEP the Conservative base, no pandering is required. No “amnesty” is required. No reward of the ill-gotten goods (residency) to the criminals who stole it.

Anyone who advocates amnesty would also “solve” problem of a sinking ship by declaring the incoming seawater to be “cargo” instead of fixing the leak (sealing the border) and starting to bail (enforcing attrition through enforcement — E-Verify etc.)

Attrition WORKS (wherever it is really tried).

fred5678 on January 15, 2013 at 2:49 AM

We’ve been at this collapse since 2009. Can we just speed it along already? Throw open the borders and sign them all up for welfare. Imagine how that will stimulate the economy, and we can pay for it all with platinum coins. Huzzah!

DFCtomm on January 15, 2013 at 3:07 AM

Rivals?

RINOs

Dr. ZhivBlago on January 15, 2013 at 5:23 AM

BIGGGGGGGGG Government republican or BIIIGGGGGGGGER Government Democrat?

……both offering freebies to ILLEGAL ALIENS.

So I should vote for Rubio Ryan or any other “Government is the solution” republican why?

THROW them ALL out of office…….every single one of them.

PappyD61 on January 15, 2013 at 7:24 AM

I really don’t care WHAT Paul supports anymore.

mmcnamer1 on January 15, 2013 at 7:28 AM

Wow the GOPe heart throb old chicken legs Ryan is nothing more than a WI beta….fits right in with the rapidly failing Boner cry babies does it not? I’m amazed at the residual love still displayed for the loser tool Romney who couldn’t fight his way out of a wet paper sack. Wake Up Ammareeca, fire the Repubs, let’s find a party that will fight for us not against us!

el Vaquero on January 15, 2013 at 7:35 AM

So much for Ryan.

David Blue on January 15, 2013 at 7:38 AM

Comment pages: 1 2 3