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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Rubio's primetime chance to sell conservatives on immigration

Sen. Marco Rubio gets a national TV audience Friday night to sell conservatives on immigration reform. Sean Hannity's Fox News show will feature the Florida Republican in a town hall meeting. A promo Thursday said Rubio took "tough questions."

A clip showed him being questioned by Texas Rep. Louie Gohmert, who said House Republicans would be willing to play ball if enforcement came before any plan to legalize undocumented immigrants. "I think you raise a very good point," Rubio said. But he said waiting to legalize would entice people to make a rush to enter the U.S.

The program, which was taped before the Senate plan passed the Judiciary Committee, begins at 9 p.m.

Rubio has done a lot of conservative radio this week, continuing a monthslong sales pitch that has had mixed results. Rubio is also talking with senators about a floor amendment that would shift responsibility for a border security plan to Congress from the Department of Homeland Security, an apparent attempt to mollify critics who say they don't trust the administration.

[Last modified: Friday, May 24, 2013 2:04am]


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