Politics

Rubio raises the possibility of jumping off immigration reform push [VIDEO]

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Matt K. Lewis
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      Matt K. Lewis

      Matt K. Lewis is a senior contributor to The Daily Caller, and a contributing editor for The Week. He is a respected commentator on politics and cultural issues, and has been cited by major publications such as The Washington Post and The New York Times. Matt is from Myersville, MD and currently resides in Alexandria, VA. Follow Matt K. Lewis on Twitter <a>@mattklewis</a>.

In a video to constituents, Sen. Marco Rubio has raised the possibility that he could abandon the immigration reform bill he’s been pushing if political “horse trading” waters down his priorities in the bill.

Though he defended the idea of comprehensive immigration reform, Rubio warned that if the individual components (such as E-Verify and border security) aren’t treated “as separate issues even though they are dealt with in one bill, then I won’t be able to support that anymore.”

Here’s an excerpt:

 ”… 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 also noted there will have to be improvements to the current bill:

“And let me tell you, there will have to be improvements. Because the good thing is the American people, the vast majority of them throughout the political spectrum, have clearly said that they are prepared to responsibly deal with those that are here illegally, but they are only willing to do so if we can take measures that ensure that this problem will never happen again in the future…”

It’s unclear whether this is a negotiation strategy to improve the bill, or if Rubio is building an escape hatch in case he is forced to abandon the effort.