Rubio Tests N.H. Waters, Gets Challenged On Immigration

Feb 23, 2015

Marco Rubio’s stop at the Lawrence barn in Hollis was a freewheeling affair. The Senator accepted a jug of maple syrup, preached a message of opportunity, and  took questions that ranged from how to get money out of politics to whether the President ought to be impeached, to immigration.

Rubio cosponsored a plan that included a path to citizenship – a proposal also supported by N.H.’s two Senators – that's angered plenty of conservatives. When a voter challenged him by to “send home every single person that's violated our country's laws” if he becomes President, Rubio didn’t back down.

"I don't think anyone can commit that to you," Rubio said. "You have 12 million human beings in America, most of whom we don't even know who they are and some of them whom our country's not going to tolerate rounding up and sending back. That's not a realistic proposal."

Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

  Rubio said the U.S. needs to better secure its borders and modernize its immigration policies – moving to system based on merit.

He also called on Democrats in the Senate to join with Republicans to reverse the Presdent's executive action on immigration.

"What’s at stake here is not the issue, it’s the constitutional principle behind it, the separation of powers, the balance of power in our republic."  

Rubio wraps up his visit this morning with a Politics and Eggs speech at St. Anselm College.

He told the crowd in Hollis he expects to be back soon.