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Sen. Marco Rubio Answers Conservative Critics of the Immigration Bill

Posted: June 27, 2013 at 10:45 am   /   by

On June 26, 2013, Sen. Marco Rubio attempted to answer critics of Senate Bill S.744, the “Gang-of-Eight” immigration bill, as amended. This is an annotated 3-minute segment of his full 12-minute speech. The annotations contain pointed questions and comments that those who’ve read the bill might well ask or make.

Many conservatives believe the government will yet again find a way to avoid putting in proper border security despite all the promises of S.744. The bill is huge, and there are many exceptions and escape clauses that allow for litigation, time-limit expiration, and various waivers to be granted individually or en masse at the discretion of the Secretary of Homeland Security (Janet Napolitano).

Pages 857-858 of the current bill text (see link below) include what appear to be the most likely escape clauses for the federal government to avoid yet again fulfillment of the promises of yet another immigration bill.  Namely — 10 years after enactment, if border enforcement trigger levels have not been met because of litigation, applications for permanent resident status shall be accepted no matter how weak immigration enforcement happens to be.

Might open-border advocates or environmentalists pursue some new litigation (in part) to hold the border open?  Why not?  The Mexican-American border is home to many endangered species.  See for example this link, under the heading “The Fence”.

Sen. Rubio is a promising young conservative who has given many of us hope for restoration and renewal of limited government, personal responsibility, and free markets for all.  But his speech doesn’t line up well with an actual reading of the bill, and I hope he will continue to work on the bill until it can be a promise kept rather than yet another promise broken.

In the meantime, kudos to Sen. Rubio for taking to the Senate floor and at least addressing We-the-People about the bill.

The full S.744 text is at this link.   The full speech is at this link.