Believe it or not, I agree with Marco Rubio on much of the immigration issue, but I think the actual legislation produced is a bad piece of legislation not worth supporting. I know many of you are deeply hostile towards him now and the quote that lingered much of yesterday from an aide was not helpful.As I noted in that post, I doubt, and you should doubt, that Marco Rubio believes that quote. Anyone who has heard him speak of his experience should doubt it. But the quote from the aide is problematic for him. This morning the Senator reached out about the context of the quote.According to Senator Rubio:
The quote attributed to a member of my staff was a description of one argument used against big labor’s opposition to a guest worker program. It is not my view in any way. I could not disagree with it more.My belief is that the American worker is the most productive worker in the world. The purpose of a guest worker program is not to replace Americans, but rather to provide workers in industries where there is a shortage of domestic workers.The context of the question was the reporter laid out the AFL-CIO opposition to guest worker program and my aide laid out the argument against their position as it relates to construction. It is not the argument we use. In fact, if you recall the construction trade isn’t supporting the bill because it limits the number of foreign workers that can come in. They wanted it unlimited or at least a much higher number. But the limit is in the bill to protect Americans, especially in construction.
You may not want to give the Senator the benefit of the doubt, but what he said this morning is consistent with his long held beliefs. Still, as I told him, I don’t envy him and wouldn’t want to be his shoes. That quote was damaging in and of itself and many are not going to give him the benefit of the doubt at this point on any issue. That is unfortunate.