Bennett said he would vote for the immigration legislation, which gives immigrants who were illegally brought to the U.S. as children a conditional pathway to citizenship, if Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) brought it to the floor under the right conditions.
If that fails, the outgoing senator said, Republicans have privately discussed the prospects of writing and passing a version of the DREAM Act that could make its way through Congress.
“Now, I know a lot of my colleagues are not happy to vote for it, and I don’t think the votes … are there to pass it in this Congress,” Bennett said in his final conference call with Utah reporters. “And as I’ve talked, particularly to my Republican friends, I’ve said we really need to do this. Their reaction has been to me, privately, ‘You’re right. We do really need to do it.'”