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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Jeb Bush on DREAM Act: Border security comes first



Jeb Bush in Washington this morning said he is "supportive" of the concept behind the DREAM Act but emphasized border security as a first priority, a move toward the Republican line.

"It is so clear that the first element of comprehensive reform must be to control the border," Bush told reporters during an education reform conference. "It is incredibly sad that we can't control our border, we create these unintended consequences and then it plays out in a way that I don't think is very just."

Bush, who has supported immigration reform efforts, said the federal government had failed to "lessen people's fears and concerns," about illegal immigration, "which are legitimate."

He added: "But I have sympathy for the high school class president from Coral Gables High School -- it could be any high school in Miami -- that is through no fault of their own maybe here for close to their entire life and are put in this dilemma. Shame on the federal government for allowing that to happen."

Bush did not flatly oppose the legislation but it was clear the former governor stood with other Republicans, including Sen.-elect Marco Rubio, in a border-first posture. He said he agreed with the argument by some that the legislation is "piecemeal."

Afterward, Bush sat down for an on-camera interview with a news magazine.


[Last modified: Tuesday, November 30, 2010 1:17pm]


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