At this point, the most realistic way to make progress on immigration would be through a series of individual bills. Any effort to use a limited bill as a ruse to trigger a conference that would then produce a comprehensive bill would be counterproductive. Furthermore, any such effort would fail, because any single senator can and will block conference unless such conference is specifically instructed to limit the conference to only the issue dealt with in the underlying bill.
This is the first real public shift between Rubio and the other Gang of Eight Senators. Sens. McCain, Schumer, Menendez, and Durbin have all made it clear that they simply want the House to pass any immigration-related legislation so that it can be conferenced with the Senate amnesty.Sen. Rubio's spokesman's comments come after the senator went on a CNN morning show program and was quizzed on immigration reform:
I also don't think it's realistic to believe that the House is just going to take up and pass whatever the Democrats in the Senate are demanding. And so I think that there are many things on immigration that we can agree on and I think we should move on those and make progress on those issues. And there are a handful that we have no consensus on in this country yet, and those issues may have to be delayed at some point until we can reach a consensus on how to approach them.
But my point -- I still want to solve immigration. I think it's an important issue for the country to deal with but I don't think we should not do anything because we can't do everything.
The CNN host then asked if he would be open to the House's piece-meal approach:
Well that was my original position and continues to be my preferred option because I just think we're going to get a better result that way, and I think we're going to get a result that way. I think when you try to do anything big in Washington, it ends up running into headwinds.
Now, that's the direction the Senate went, and I wanted to influence that process, so I got involved in it. But I continue to believe that a series of sequential, individual bills is the best way, the ideal way, to reform our immigration system.
Updated: Fri, Nov 1st 2013 @ 10:48am EDT