Opinion: Morning Examiner

Morning Examiner: Marco Rubio alienates conservatives with immigration push

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Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., appeared on Sean Hannity’s Fox News program Friday to sell the immigration deal he made with Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and three other Democrats. It did not go well. “His case for the bill was unpersuasive and, at times, incoherent,” National Review‘s Stanley Kurtz wrote.

Credibility questioned
“Rubio distanced himself from his own bill, refusing to defend its security provisions and at least appearing to claim instead that, as it stands at the moment, the bill is unsatisfactory and undeserving of support,” Kurtz continued. “Yet Rubio has been defending the bill far and wide, even appearing in an ad on its behalf–an ad that touts the bill’s security provisions. If he’s filmed this ad for the bill, he ought to be able to defend its security provisions. If he can’t defend the security provisions as they now stand, why did he consent to be included in the ad?”

Power Line‘s Paul Mirengoff was also unimpressed. “Rubio’s main arguments were pathetic … Rubio first denied that his bill creates a path to citizenship and then argued that the path to citizenship his bill creates is a good thing because it will cause the formerly illegal immigrants to ‘fall in love with America.’ Clearly, Sen. Rubio speaks with a forked tongue.”
How it’s playing in Iowa
The Washington Examiner‘s Byron York emailed some Iowa conservatives over the weekend to gauge their impressions of the probable GOP field. York did not prompt them to talk about immigration reform, but all of them did. “Most Republicans here now see Rubio as the amnesty candidate,” GOP State Central Committee member Jamie Johnson told York.

“Rubio has hurt himself immeasurably with his support of the current immigration bill,” Sioux City conservative radio host Sam Clovis added. “The rule of law still trumps all the feel-good aspects of the bill.”

Looking ahead to 2016
If Schumer-Rubio passes, does Rubio really want to get stuck defending the Obama administration’s implementation of this bill during a Republican primary? Will there be rampant fraud in the implementation of the amnesty portions of the bill? Will the border security measures be working? Will E-Verify be up and running?

It is going to be hard to win conservative votes in a Republican presidential primary if you are also the name most associated with Obama’s biggest second-term domestic policy accomplishment.

From The Washington Examiner
Editorial: No more back-room deals between bureaucrats and liberal activists
Byron York: Immigration could spoil Marco Rubio’s presidential chances
Michael Barone: More than all past presidents, Obama uses 1917 Espionage Act to go after reporters
Sean Higgins: Environmentalists pick away at Dem support for Keystone pipeline
Tim Carney: Democrat-heavy IRS will always distrust Tea Parties
Phil Klein: Don’t be fooled by California’s premium claims
Conn Carroll: It’s the end of America as we know it and conservatives feel fine
Cal Thomas: Two prime ministers and the future of the West
Hugh Hewitt: Fake flowers and the pretend White House press corps

In Other News
The New York Times, Obama plans 3 nominations for key court: The nomination of the judges to a key federal court all at once is certain to unleash fierce Republican opposition and could rekindle a broader partisan struggle over Senate rules.
The Washington Post, Key U.S. weapon designs hacked: Among more than two dozen U.S. systems breached are programs critical to missile defenses and combat aircraft, according to a confidential report.
The Wall Street Journal, U.S. oil boom divides OPEC: The U.S. energy boom is deepening splits within OPEC, threatening to drive a wedge between African and Arab members as the cartel grapples with a revolution in oil trade.
The Los Angeles Times, Ex-Fannie Mae worker calls kickbacks routine: Investigators are looking into assertions by an ex-Fannie Mae worker that kickbacks were “a natural part of business” at the federal housing finance company.
The Daily Beast, John McCain slips across border into Syria, meets with rebels: Sen. John McCain Monday became the highest-ranking U.S. official to enter Syria since the bloody civil war there began more than two years ago.
Bloomberg, Top watchdogs absent at agencies representing 58 percent of U.S. budget: The State Department is among five agencies in Obama’s Cabinet without an inspector general. Those departments account for more than half the nation’s $1.29 trillion discretionary budget.

Lefty Playbook
The New Republic on Michael Bloomberg’s campaign to end the National Rifle Association.
Joan Walsh explains how Eric Holder holds on.
Kevin Drum says the sequester cuts are beginning to hurt.
Hunter Walker reports that Democrats are pushing an amendment that would place an affirmative right to vote in the U.S. Constitution.

Righty Playbook
Ramesh Ponnuru on Obama’s dangerous contempt for the rule of law.
Peter Ferrara says global cooling is here.
The Heritage Foundation lists some facts about food stamps everyone needs to know.

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