Sen. Marco Rubio on Wednesday blamed Washington’s inability to produce a comprehensive immigration policy on Democrats who prefer that the issue remain unresolved so they can continue to leverage it to win the Hispanic vote.
“I think there are some people in the Democratic Party that think that the immigration issue’s more valuable to them unsolved, that it gives them something to talk about, that they can go back to Hispanic communities and make unrealistic promises every two years and win votes,” Rubio (R-Fla.) said in an appearance on “On the Record with Greta Van Susteren.”
He added, “For some Democrats, the issue of immigration is better politically if they just leave it the way it is right now because they can use it against Republicans.”
Rubio, the son of Cuban immigrants whose Hispanic background is considered a major political asset, had spoken at the Latino Coalition’s Annual Economic Summit in Washington, D.C., earlier on Wednesday. While his name has been floated as a possible running mate for Mitt Romney, the Florida senator has repeatedly declined to discuss the VP selection process, most recently saying he has no doubt Romney will make a “great selection.”
Vowing to do whatever he can to help Romney rally the Hispanic community, Rubio said on Fox News that a strong message about the importance of preserving free enterprise – a topic that has been at the center of the 2012 presidential election in the context of Romney’s past work experience at Bain Capital — is an especially important message to share with Hispanics.
And while President Barack Obama has benefited from certain ethnic groups having historically voted for Democrats, Rubio warned that the president’s failed economic policies will begin to increasingly resonate within the Hispanic community.
The Florida senator also expressed his frustration at what he said was a “lack of urgency” in Washington, which he partly blamed on a “perpetual campaign.”
“Every vote on the [Senate] floor is predetermined. They know if it’s going to fail or pass,” he said. “They’re literally just bringing them up to create material for campaign commercials in the fall, instead of solving or dealing directly with some of the major issues that we face as a country.”
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