Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) blitzed all five Sunday shows in his most public pitch yet for the emerging immigration reform bill, arguing that it would control the border, and rejecting conservative criticisms that it provided “amnesty” for illegal immigrants in the country.

“This is not amnesty. Amnesty is the forgiveness of something. Amnesty is anything that says ‘do it illegally, it’ll be cheaper and easier,'” Rubio, a member of the bipartisan ‘Gang of Eight’ senators set to unveil their immigration bill on Tuesday, said on “Fox News Sunday.”…

Rubio also pushed back against a report from the conservative Heritage Foundation that immigration reform would be costly to the government. A similar report helped derail immigration reform six years ago by undercutting conservative support for the measure.

“Conservatives love dynamic scoring,” he said, arguing the bill’s effects should be taken on the whole and not just looked at from what it would cost the government. “This will be a net positive for our country now and for the future.”

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“On any issue where there is progress being made, we don’t want to get in the way,” said a senior administration official who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the White House legislative strategy and assess its prospects. “Every one of these issues has potential pitfalls and potential opportunities.”

Inside the White House, the issue is being managed by Cecilia Muñoz, director of the Domestic Policy Council. Administration officials acknowledge that immigration is the issue on which they can be the most patient, given that many Republicans are eager to repair relations with the fast-growing Latino electorate after the November election.

While Obama has allowed Senate negotiators to work on a compromise that can win approval, a White House staff member attends each staff-level meeting to monitor progress and assist with the technical aspects of writing the bill.

“We know we have the upper hand on immigration,” the administration official said, acknowledging that Obama has far less sway when it comes to gun-control measures and the budget.

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Via Gallup.

gal

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The details that Sen. Sessions cites as troubling include:

— Instead of securing the border first, it merely requires DHS to submit a plan (within 6 months) to achieve modest enforcement goals at some point in the next 10 years in exchange for an immediate grant of amnesty. History tells us the enforcement part will never effectively happen.

— Even the border security’s future targets are weak: the plan only requires DHS to state what resources DHS needs in order to apprehend 90% of those illegal immigrants the border patrol sees – but not those who successfully evade border patrol altogether.

— Increased security is called for only in certain areas of the southwest border, leaving huge vulnerabilities to cartels and other illegal immigrants.

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[A]dvocates of immigration amnesty would now like to deny the obvious: that even talk of amnesty is a powerful magnet for more illegal border-crossing. They should go to South Texas, where the rush has already started, according to a report from WOAI in San Antonio…

Weren’t these recent crossers the people the New York Times told us didn’t exist anymore? Specifically, the Times, and the Washington Examiner ‘s Michael Barone, tell us that we’ll never see anything like the surges of illegal immigration that followed the last amnesty, in 1986. Given Mexico’s declining birthrate, there’s just nobody left to come, the theory goes–and the people who do leave the countryside are going to work in Mexico’s growing economy. I doubt the current surge is yet big enough to contradict this convenient demographic deus ex machina. But it’s not a good sign. We don’t know that Mexico’s economy will keep growing, or that ours won’t boom. Plus, there is still Central America to provide a steady flow of impoverished itinerants.

If this is the surge we get after some Washington pundits begin talking about amnesty, imagine what will happen now that Marco Rubio is continuously on every television channel, including the Home Shopping Network, confidently pitching his amnesty plan.

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Immigrations and Customs Enforcement agents’ union president Chris Crane called on Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio to abandon the bipartisan “Gang of Eight” in the U.S. Senate pushing immigration reform on Friday in a statement obtained exclusively by Breitbart News.

“Senator Rubio was asked during a recent interview that ‘if you don’t get enforcement first, or securing the borders first, is that a deal killer for you?,’” Crane said. “And he replied ‘Absolutely…Because we will be right back here again.’ But the outline from the Gang of 8 offers legalization, or amnesty, before enforcement is accomplished. Senator Schumer admitted as much: ‘we’ve come to a basic agreement, which is that first, people will be legalized…Then, we will make sure the border is secure.’ I would then respectfully call on Senator Rubio to follow through on his commitment to the American people — and his pledge to accomplish enforcement before legalization – and to leave the Gang of 8.”

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When President Obama met with House Republicans in March, he told them he was doing them “a favor” by pushing the immigration issue.

According to a senior Republican in the meeting, Obama told House members that he was “doing you all [Republicans] a favor” by highlighting the immigration issue, since he had received about 75 percent of the Hispanic vote and the current debate offers the GOP a chance to impress the demographic.

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“All we’ve done here is create an alternative to that that they can access, and the alternative we’ve created is going to be longer, more expensive and more difficult to navigate,” Rubio said this morning on “This Week.” “It will actually be cheaper if they went back home, waited 10 years, and applied for a green card. And so, secondly, we’ve not awarding anything. All we’re giving people the opportunity to eventually do is gain access to the same legal immigration system, the same legal immigration process that will be available to everybody else.”

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