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3 indications Republicans are cracking on immigration reform

March 19, 2013, at 2:45 PM
 

The GOP's resistance to comprehensive immigration reform — including a path to citizenship for the nearly 11 million people now in the country illegally — may be weakening.

There have been three significant developments in the last day:

1. Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) backs a path to citizenship.

In a major speech this morning, the Kentucky senator and possible 2016 presidential candidate declared, "If you wish to live and work in America, then we will find a place for you." While Paul is not necessarily a leader of Senate Republicans, his position may give cover to other Republicans who are currently on the fence about the issue.

2. The RNC urged the party to embrace immigration reform.

While the GOP's extensive autopsy of what went wrong during the 2012 elections focused almost entirely on strategy and tactics, the 100-page document also included immigration as its one legislative policy recommendation.

3. The evangelical wing of the party is on board.

The Evangelical Immigration Table, one of the country's most conservative Christian groups, explicitly urged Congress to include "clear steps to citizenship" for illegal immigrants in any reform bill.

David Hawkings notes that the "trio of endorsements should be the final push of support required to overcome the conservative 'citizenship amounts to amnesty' default setting of the past seven years."

There's still a long way to go before an immigration reform bill passes Congress, but the wall standing in its way is quickly crumbling.

 

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