U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, whom every presidential candidate would love to have as a running mate, sounds a lot like a Rick Perry supporter when it comes to the issue of tuition help for immigrants who grew up in the United States long after they were brought here illegally.
The issue flared up at the last presidential debate when Perry defended a bill he signed in Texas that gave in-state tuition rates to some illegal immigrants who graduated from Texas high schools. Perry was booed by the tea-party crowd.
Rubio, who hasn't and won't endorse in the race, might meet the same fate.
"I think there’s general consensus behind the idea that we need to do something to help out kids who were brought here by our parents longtime ago and who have grown up in this country," Rubio said a few weeks ago, echoing comments and sentiments he made on the campaign trail last year.
“I do think that we need to figure out how we accommodate kids who have something to contribute to our nation’s future. Whether it’s serving in the armed forces or going on to college and graduated who have basically lived most of their lives (here),” he said.
"I would say the vast majority of Americans would say that doesn’t feel right," to deport or deny education help to a person in a case where "you’re going to go to college and you’re a good student and you’re valedictorian of your school or you’re going to go into the military," Rubio said. "We’ve got to figure something out. And that’s what we’re in the process of trying to do."
When Rubio was the state Legislature he supported legislation similar to one that Perry has caught flak for.
“There was a Florida bill," Rubio said. "It was pretty limited to a number of people, you had to have a certain GPA. It was very limited in scope. I don’t know what the Texas bill was. I remember the one in Florida we did some work, but it was a limited bill and it was narrowly focused on a group of people, which is one of the issues happening with the Dream Act now -- that it’s not narrow.”