Sen. Marco Rubio’s plan for a 10- to 13-year path to citizenship for illegal immigrants is “consistent” with President Obama’s principles, White House press secretary Jay Carney said Monday.
Mr. Carney’s comment suggested the president would sign off on the plan, but he cautioned that the White House would withhold support for any legislation until seeing the final language.
Mr. Carney did say that the details of Mr. Rubio’s plan as reported so far are “consistent with the president’s position.”
Mr. Rubio said Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union with Candy Crowley” that an immigration reform plan he is negotiating with other members of the so-called Gang of 8 would require illegal immigrants to be in the system for more than a decade before they can apply for citizenship.
Also, other objectives would have to be met separately: border security would have to be improved, a national employer-verification system would be created and a system would be implemented to track foreigners who have overstayed their visas.
Mr. Carney said the president also supports “a number of very specific steps” along the path to citizenship, including paying taxes and a potential fine, and learning English. He said the president has from the beginning talked about the importance of enhanced border security and employer verification.
“What we have seen thus far … is in keeping with those basic principles,” Mr. Carney said, adding that the administration is “encouraged” by progress in the Senate.