Sen. Marco Rubio is blaming the White House for the possible failure of his own version of the DREAM Act immigration bill, according to Talking Points Memo
“One of the things that has already been documented is that the White House . . . has been calling in DREAM Act advocates and asking them, almost ordering them, not to work with me on this issue,” the Florida Republican told radio talk show host Laura Ingraham last week.
“They have been counting on using this issue as a wedge issue [with Hispanic voters] in October to drive up turnout,” added Rubio, who is often mentioned as a possible vice presidential running mate with Mitt Romney.
According to Talking Points, the White House and Democrats, however, may be “playing into Rubio’s hands” by resisting his alternative version of the bill, which he insists would provide a path to citizenship for undocumented people raised in the United States who go to college or serve in the military.
The administration says it would provide only the ability to remain in the country, but not citizenship, and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa says it would create a “second-class status” for children of illegal immigrants.
But Talking Points reports that most immigrant-rights advocates consider Rubio’s alternative a form of progress, even though they prefer the original DREAM Act measure.
“If Democrats undermine Rubio’s effort, that makes it easier for the senator to blame them when the proposal goes down, with the aim of confusing voters as to which party is on their side,” Talking Points reported.
But the issue is just as tricky for Republicans, according MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, who wrote last week, “The White House isn’t killing the senator’s watered-down version of the DREAM Act; Republicans are.
“Mitt Romney’s chief advisor on immigration policy said Rubio’s plan is a non-starter, and House Speaker John Boehner said the Florida senator shouldn’t even bother with his bill because it’s not going to pass,” Maddow wrote.
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