Work on a long-waited for immigration reform bill got off to a quick start in the 113th Congress, with a bipartisan "Gang of Eight" Senators announcing in January that they had reached an agreement for a plan framework that would address guest workers and employer verification, as well as a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants already in this country contingent upon securing the border.
The gang of eight, including Sens. Marco Rubio, John McCain and Charles Schumer, were reportedly optimistic of the plan passing in the Senate; and House Speaker John Boehner had high hopes for a similar bipartisan bill being worked on in the house. The goodwill in Washington on the immigration issue though has gone into a tailspin after USA Today obtained a draft of the president's "backup" plan which the White House swears was not purposefully leaked. Republicans have pounced on the administration for allowing the proposal to go public without bipartisan input, with Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio quickly realeasing a statement Saturday night that the proposal would be "dead on arrival" and leaking the plan was "disappointing to those of us working on a serious solution."
The White House plan would allow illegal immigrants to become legal permanent residents of the United States, putting them on a path to eventual citizenship within eight years. Conservatives have criticized the White House plan as an "amnesty bill," and its release as a political ploy.
"The White House leaked its immigration legislation over the weekend, revealing a plan so liberal that it wouldn’t even likely be able to get 51 votes in the Democratic Senate," Chris Stirewalt writes on FoxNews.com. "Rapid amnesty and a special pathway to citizenship for those already in the country illegally are not going to be part of any law that passes in the Congress."
On TheBlaze TV Tuesday Andrew Wilkow was joined by Heritage Foundation President and former Republican Senator from South Carolina Jim DeMint to discuss the White House leak, immigration reform, and how illegal immigration effects the economy.