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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Rubio floats idea Obama could legalize 11 million illegal immigrants



Sen. Marco Rubio told Tallahassee radio host Preston Scott this morning that if Congress doesn't act on immigration reform, then President Obama could "tempted" to legalize 11 million people through executive action.

Obama has said that probably couldn't happen and that Congress needs to act but the idea has gotten some currency from among immigration reform activists. With the Republican base deeply distrustful of anything Obama, Rubio's implied threat may help take some sting off his own involvement in immigration reform.

The head of the National Day Laborer Organizing Network said the so-called Plan B should be put into action. "Senator Rubio's bizarre comments demonstrate precisely why the President must lead on this issue by suspending deportations and expanding DACA," said Executive Director Pablo Alvarado. "He should take action now to prevent Congress from holding people's equality hostage. Rather than think about executive action as a 'plan B,' we think Presidential action will actually improve prospects for a good bill to get through Congress."

We asked the White House if Obama was contemplating action. “No," said spokeswoman Joanna Rosholm "The only solution to this problem is for Congress to fix the broken immigration system by passing comprehensive reform.”

[Last modified: Tuesday, August 13, 2013 5:29pm]


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