Furore over Obamas leaked immigration plan

By: admin
Updated: 18 Feb 2013 12:38 AM

Amid a furore over a leaked Obama administration plan to put America's 11
million illegal immigrants, including some 250,000 Indians, on a path to
citizenship, the White House has reaffirmed its commitment to a bipartisan

The Obama administration has circulated the draft legislation that would
put the illegal immigrants on the citizenship after about eight years and
would require them to go to the back of the line behind legal applicants
within various government agencies, according to various media reports.

A draft proposal first reported by USA Today included an eight-year path
to permanent residency, and eventually citizenship, for illegal

It also included a criminal background check, back taxes, English and US
history requirement and a proposed new "Lawful Prospective Immigrant"

The draft also included increases to the border security and legal process
and expansion of the E-Verify system to check employability of potential

President Barack Obama's leaked plan evoked a strong reaction from the
Republican members of the 'Gang of Eight' Republican and Democratic
senators working on a bipartisan immigration legislation.

"If actually proposed, the president's bill would be dead on arrival in
Congress, leaving us with unsecured borders and a broken legal immigration
system for years to come," said senator Marco Rubio.

The 2008 Republican presidential candidate John McCain, another member of
the "Gang of Eight," told NBC "leaks don't happen in Washington by

Yet another Republican senator Rand Paul argued on Fox News the leak shows
that the president is "really not serious" on getting immigration reform

But Chuck Schumer, a Democratic member of the 'Gang of Eight' said Sunday
he was not "upset" with the leaked draft of Obama's own immigration bill.

At the same time, however, Schumer said real change will only occur if
revamping immigration policy is done in a bipartisan fashion.

"It's obvious that if a Democrat, the president or anyone else, puts out
what they want on their own, it's going to be different than when you have
a bipartisan agreement," he told CNN.

The White House, however, contended that the administration was not using
the leak to float its own proposals.

Responding to Rubio's response, White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough
said on ABC that the White House has been "talking with all the parties to
the 'Gang of Eight' effort in the Senate."

"Let's make sure (the
White House bill) doesn't have to be proposed and make sure the Gang of
Eight makes good progress on these efforts as much as they say they want
to," he said.