« The Truth-O-Meter checks claim about Sunday 'Souls to the Polls' | Main | White House spox thanks Republican Party of Florida for touting good economic news »

Marco Rubio faults Obama, Democrats for immigration hypocrisy

ORLANDO -- Sen. Marco Rubio gave a forceful speech on immigration here Friday, criticizing people on the left and right for simplifying the issue as political weapon. He lumped President Obama into the mix, referring to his announcement last Friday he was blocking deportations of young illegal immigrants.

"As long as this issue of immigration is a political ping pong that each side uses to win electrons and influence votes, I'm telling you, it won't get solved."

Obama's plan is similar to what Rubio had been working on. The White House denies any connection or election-year calculation. "I don't care who gets the credit. I don't," Rubio said. "But it exposes the fact that this issue is all about politics for some people. Not just Democrats, Republicans, too."

"Why is this issue simplified? I'll tell you right now: Because it is powerful politics," he told the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials. Rubio said opposing forces want immigration unresolved, because "it's easier to influence elections. It's easier to raise money."

"Everything is about politics. I've seen it firsthand," he said. "Three months ago I started to work with some of my colleagues on a concept: How can we accommodate children that are in this country through no fault of their own undocumented and how can we do it in a way that unites us and not divides us?"

He went on: "The reaction from many on the left was an immediate dismissal. I saw people say on the left that I was proposing a new 3/5ths compromise, harkening back to the days when a slave was only three-fifths of a person. I was accused of supporting apartheid. I was accused of supporting a Dream Act without a dream. Of course three months, the president takes a similar idea and implements it through executive action and now it's the greatest idea in the world."

Rubio said he wasn't looking for a "talking point" or to influence the November elections. "I was looking to help these kids that I've met."

The Florida Republican played a little politics himself, though with a smile. He reminded the crowd it's been a few years since Obama addressed them, but then said he wasn't out to be critical.

-- Alex Leary, Tampa Bay Times


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Can't take anymore

Gee, Marcocito. Maybe you would get a little more credit for your "ideas" about solving the illegal immigrant problem if you had bothered to write down a proposal and present it as a bill in Congress. Sort of like trying to claim a Lotto prize with the numbers you meant to use if you had bothered to buy a ticket. What a cry baby! Try doing something besides making grandstanding speeches and kissing up to big time campaign donors.

A Cuban

Marco, the only Latino's that buy your spin is the older Cuban Republicans, the rest of us know better. I can understand that Obama beat you to the ,but really it does not look to critize the same proposal you were talking about introducing.

claudia Vargas

This is laughable because Senator Rubio voted against immigration and anything resembling the Dream Act.


claudia Vargas

Senator Rubio, really? "I don't support the dream act as drafted." Really Marco, you stole the idea of the Dream Act from President Obama. Your not fooling anyone or any of us latino's. Your a joke bought and paid for by SUPER PACS. Do us a favor and resign.


The only one playing politics here is Obama, who campaigned on immigration reform in 2008 saying it would be something he would do in his first year in office. He did it to get the Hispanic vote, and did he do anything regarding immigration until this? No. In fact, his administration has deported the most illegal immigrants in history. Wake up, Claudia. Get your facts straight. Sen. Durbin (D-IL) was the one who introduced the DreamAct bill in Congress, not Obama. Obama only did this because he knows Rubio is a top choice for VP. I hope Rubio goes on with an immigration reform bill.

The comments to this entry are closed.