Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., believes that 70 U.S. senators might ultimately support the Gang of Eight’s immigration package, but White House Press Secretary Jay Carney warned him not to start the victory lap too early.
“I think it’s important to note that there’s a lot of work to be done here, and we’ve seen — with a variety of issues over time — that victory can be declared early, and this is real work,” Carney replied during the press briefing Monday when asked about Schumer’s remarks. “It requires some elbow grease and some real grit and determination.”
The press secretary hinted to reporters that the compromising may be over when asked to comment on Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio’s claim that the bill (which he co-authored) needs improving before it can pass through the Senate.
“The Senate legislation may not contain every specific element we have called for, but it does represent an important step towards the broad principles the president has made clear need to be a part of common-sense immigration reform,” Carney said. “We believe that the bill that emerged from the committee reflects the president’s principles. And, we believe that the bill that passes through the Senate with bipartisan support should and needs to reflect the president’s principles, and we will be engaged in that process as it moves through the Senate and beyond.”
Rubio released a video saying that the bill isn’t good enough to pass yet. “[T]here will have to be improvements,” he said. “Because the good thing is the American people, the vast majority of them throughout the political spectrum, have clearly said that they are prepared to responsibly deal with those that are here illegally, but they are only willing to do so if we can take measures that ensure that this problem will never happen again in the future. And so, if we can make sure we put in place enforcement mechanisms and a guest worker program that ensures this will never happen again in the future, we’re going to have responsible immigration reform. And if we don’t have that then we won’t have immigration reform, and I think our country will suffer for it.”