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Thursday, Apr 23 2015

Caution: Attempting to Follow Rubio on Immigration May Result in Vertigo

Apr 23, 2015

Marco Rubio’s run for president should come with a warning label: Caution: Attempting to Follow Marco Rubio’s Twists and Turns on Immigration May Result in Vertigo.

According to BuzzFeed, in an article headlined “Marco Rubio Rakes In Donor Money By Touting Immigration Record — Behind Closed Doors“:

“…the candidate’s aggressive advocacy for the Senate’s 2013 immigration bill has proved to be a substantial draw within the GOP money crowd — and his campaign has shown little hesitation about cashing in. Even as Rubio labors to publicly distance himself from the legislation so loathed by conservative primary voters, he and his aides have privately highlighted this line in his resume when soliciting support from the deep-pocketed donors in the party’s more moderate business wing.”

Rubio is literally saying different things to different audiences to curry favor and cash with diametrically opposed wings of his party. There’s no doubt, he has to do it politically. But his litany of zig-zags are patently shady and shows how untrustworthy he is.

A “New American Century?” Nah, just shameless political theater as usual.

Check out Rubio’s dizzying history on immigration:

Rubio Initially Supported Immigration Reform Despite Challenges

Rubio’s Immigration Proposal Divided Members Of The Tea Party.According to a blog by Alex Leary in the Tampa Bay Times, “Tea party members are divided over Sen. Marco Rubio’s role in the immigration debate, according to interviews with movement leaders and reaction on social media.’” [Tampa Bay Times Blogs, 1/30/13]

  • Liberty Foundation’s Everett Wilkinson Of South Florida: Members Considered Rubio’s Bill An Amnesty Bill, “They’re Not Happy With Him.” According to a blog by Alex Leary in the Tampa Bay Times, “A lot of members are saying it’s an amnesty bill. They’re not happy with him,’ said Everett Wilkinson of South Florida, who heads the newly named Liberty Foundation boasting more than 100,000 members. Wilkinson said he’s been in contact with Rubio’s office and had been given information to help explain Rubio’s thinking to tea party members. ‘Most of them are upset. We feel there’s other issues he could be focused on. It could hurt him with the tea party but it’s too early to say. This whole thing could go off like an Acme rocket. You never know what direction it’s going to go. He may hop off it.’” [Tampa Bay Times Blogs, 1/30/13]
  • Florida Tea Party Network’s Henry Kelley: Members Were “Generally Supportive” Of Rubio’s Immigration Proposal. According to a blog by Alex Leary in the Tampa Bay Times, “But Henry Kelley of the Florida Tea Party Network said members he’s been in touch with are generally supportive of Rubi’s approach, which calls for tougher enforcement before a pathway to citizenship kicks in. ‘There’s a recognition there’s a problem,’ Kelley said. ‘I’ve always said ‘round them up and throw them out’ is not a strategy. It’s time to deal with this. I don’t see this as amnesty.’ Kelley acknowledged there’s a faction opposed to anything that could lead to citizenship but ‘the broad tone is ‘We have a problem, let’s sit down and fix it like adults.’” [Tampa Bay Times Blogs, 1/30/13]

Rubio Admitted That “Fixing Immigration Alone” Would Not Attract Hispanics To The Republican Party But Said It Would Help “Clear The Way” To “Pitch The Virtues Of Smaller Government.” According to the Tampa Bay Times, “Rubio acknowledges that fixing immigration alone won’t turn Hispanics to the GOP but says it will clear the way for him and others to pitch the virtues of smaller government. ‘Some raise valid points and I respect their views,’ he wrote in response to Erickson’s critical blog. ‘But in the end, to leave things the way they are now is de facto amnesty and a barrier to accomplishing important government reforms in other areas. It is no way to run a nation of immigrants.’” [Tampa Bay Times, 2/1/13]

Rubio Pushed Reform

Rubio Did Not Mention His Immigration Proposal, Which Included A Pathway To Citizenship, During His CPAC Speech. According to the Orlando Sentinel, “Rubio more than held his own in offering up generous servings of red-meat rhetoric — and no mention at all of his efforts to craft an overhaul of immigration laws, including a path to citizenship that is unpopular with CPAC delegates.” [Orlando Sentinel, 3/15/13]

Rubio Was The “Head Cheerleader” For The Gang Of 8 Immigration Reform Legislation. According to Orlando Sentinel, “Abandoning his cautious go-slow approach, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio has become the head cheerleader for an immigration-overhaul bill to be unveiled today that has major implications for Florida as well as his possible run for the White House. Rubio threw himself into a high-energy and full-throated promotion of the controversial measure on seven TV news shows Sunday. And he is sure to take center stage today when the ‘Gang of Eight’ senators roll out a bill that combines workplace and border enforcement with a conditional path to citizenship for 11 million immigrants — including 825,000 in Florida — living here in violation of the law.” [Orlando Sentinel, 4/16/13]

…Then Started To Hedge

Rubio Insisted That The Immigration Bill Was “Only A Starting Point.” According to a blog by Alex Leary in the Tampa Bay Times, “Sen As the group let out, Rubio was on a conference call with another group arranged by the Hispanic Leader-ship Network. His message: This bill is only a starting point.’” [Tampa Bay Times Blogs, 5/7/13]

Rubio Threatened To Walk Away From The Immigration Reform Legislation If Stricter Enforcement Reform Measures Were Not Added To The Legislation. According to a blog by Alex Leary in the Tampa Bay Times, “Sen. Marco Rubio threatened in a video today to walk away from immigration reform if additional en-forcement measures are not added to the bill. ‘Let me tell you, there will have to be improvements,’ he says in the latest installment of his constituent mailbag series. […]’[I] give you my word, that if this issue becomes one of those old-fashioned Washington issues where they start horse trading, one part of it for another part of it. If each of these are not dealt with as separate issues even though they are dealt with in one bill, then I won’t be able to support that anymore,’ he says. ‘I made that very clear from the beginning, and I continue to make that clear now. And that’s why I continue to ask for an open, transparent and extensive process. So the American people can know exactly what it is we’re doing, so that all views can be considered and heard, and so improvements can be made to this legislation. And let me tell you, there will have to be improvements.’” [Tampa Bay Times Blogs, 6/3/13]

Rubio Gave Increasingly Mixed Signals Ad To Whether Or Not He Would Vote In Favor Or Against The Immigration Bill. According to a blog by Alex Leary in the Tampa Bay Times, “Sen. Marco Rubio has for months positioned himself as the focus of the immigration debate, the reason why a bill has gotten as far as it has. But now he has managed to create an aura of mystery: Is he on board or not? A series of increasingly mixed signals from the Florida Republican including telling a conservative radio host Tuesday he would vote against the bill he helped write if changes aren’t made has frustrated and worried reform advocates as the Senate is scheduled to begin debate today.’” [Tampa Bay Times Blogs, 6/7/13]

Rubio Was Compared To Romney For Being A Flip-Flopper. According to a blog by Adam C. Smith in the Tampa Bay Times, “Byron York in the Washington Examiner compares Rubio to the GOP’s best-known flip-flopper, Mitt Romney: …Any reasonable reading of Rubio’s positions then and now leads to the conclusion that he has executed a flip-flop of Romneyesque proportions. Rubio’s flip-flop is even worse politically. While Romney switched to a position that was popular with the Republican base, Rubio has done just the opposite.’’ [Tampa Bay Times Blogs, 6/25 /13]

Rubio Denied Being A Flip-Flopper On Immigration, Insisted He Did Not Change His Position On Immigration And Noted His Legislation Did Not Provide Blanket Amnesty. According to a blog by Adam C. Smith in the Tampa Bay Times, “Rubio denies the charge. During an appearance on ‘Meet the Press’ in April, he explained that back in 2010 he opposed a ‘blanket amnesty.’ Today’s Gang of Eight bill, he continued, ‘is not blanket amnesty.’ In response to an inquiry Monday, Rubio’s Senate spokesman added that ‘Sen. Rubio opposed the 2007 immigration reform — and his position has not changed.’ Rubio’s rapid evolution has baffled some of the people who rallied to his support in 2010. ‘He came across as the genuine article who believed things to his core, a passionate, from-the-heart principled conservative who spoke with conviction,’ says one Republican who helped promote Rubio’s Senate candidacy when few establishment GOP figures supported him. ‘And immigration was not a small issue. It was so front and center in the 2010 campaign that it does create a certain level of distrust on other is-sues.’’’ [Tampa Bay Times Blogs, 6/25 /13]

Tampa Bay Times HEADLINE: “Immigration Backlash: The Petition To Recall Marco Rubio” [Tampa Bay Times, 6/30/13]

Florida House Conservatives Did Not Share Rubio’s Enthusiasm For The Immigration Reform Bill. According to the News-Press, “GOP Sen. Marco Rubio played a pivotal role in propelling last week’s bipartisan Senate vote approving a sweeping immigration reform bill. But don’t expect Florida conservatives in the House to share his enthusiasm. Several have made it clear they don’t care much for the Senate bill and might not even take it up. That’s mostly because it would offer the nation’s roughly 11 million undocumented immigrants, including some 800,000 in the Sunshine State, a path to citizenship.” [News-Press, 7/2/13]

Rubio Noted That He Supported Immigration Reform Because It Was A Starting Point And Did Not “Want To Be Part Of A Bill That 10 Years From Now People Point To As An Example Of A Mistake.” According to Florida Today, “Rubio has always known the bill might alienate some ardent conservatives. But he told reporters in April that the problem was too big to ignore any longer. ‘I don’t want to be part of a bill that 10 years from nowpeople point to as an example of a mistake. I want to make sure we do this the right way and what we have crafted is a starting point,’ he said. ‘I hope sincerely that those who have problems with it don’t just offer objections but offer solutions because to say that we don’t have a problem is not a realistic position.’” [Florida Today, 7/22/13]

Rubio’s Staff Insisted That Rubio Had Not Retreated On Immigration. According to the Orlando Sentinel, “Rubio’s staff says he is not retreating on the immigration front but is giving the U.S. House some breathing space to debate similar legislation. Unlike some senators, Rubio has not put pressure on House members and barely mentions the topic in public appearances.” [Orlando Sentinel, 7/27/13]

Rubio Abandoned His Reform Push, Received Criticism

Tampa Bay Time – Editorial HEADLINE: “Rubio Fails Leadership Test” [Tampa Bay Times, 8/15/13]

  • Tampa Bay Times Editorial: “Instead Of Publicly Promoting His Signature Legislative Accomplishment, […] He Is More Intent On Shoring Up His Political Future Than In Securing Immigration Reform.” According to an editorial in the Tampa Bay Times, “But Rubio can’t take the heat, and we’re not talking about Florida weather. Instead of publicly promoting his signature legislative accomplishment, the Republican privately talked with conservative activists in Gainesville and elsewhere who are angry with him about immigration. He is more intent on shoring up his political future than in securing immigration reform.” [Tampa Bay Times – Editorial, 8/15/13]

Tampa Bay Times HEADLINE: “Rubio Retreats On Immigration; Florida Senator Returns To A Piecemeal Approach To Passing Comprehensive Re-Form” [Tampa Bay Times, 10/29/13]

Rubio’s Spokesman, Alex Conant, Claimed That Rubio “Set Aside” His Preference For His Original Opinions On Immigration As Part Of An “Effort To Find A Bipartisan Solution.” According to the Tampa Bay Times, “By retreating now, Rubio is embracing his original preference for a series of bills that addresses immigration. Conant said the senator had put aside that preference in an effort to find a bipartisan solution.” [Tampa Bay Times, 10/29/13]

Rubio Had An “Almost Humiliating Retreat” From His Immigration Bill, Which He Once “Defended With Such Passion And Courage.” According to the News-Press, “It’s a tragedy for Rubio, the Republican Party and the United States as we watch the almost humiliating retreat from a position he had once defended with such passion and courage.” [News-Press, 10/31/13]

Published: Apr 23, 2015

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