By Katie Glueck
December 15, 2015
Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio had their most heated confrontation Tuesday night on immigration, an issue that has fueled disputes between these rising contenders for weeks.
Rubio attempted to pin down Cruz over whether he would rule out legalizing immigrants currently here illegally.
“Will you rule it out?” he demanded.
“I’ve never supported legalization, and I do not intend to support legalization,” Cruz fired back.
Cruz, for his part, repeatedly sought to tie Rubio, who worked on comprehensive immigration reform in 2013, to President Barack Obama and New York Democrat Chuck Schumer, another senator who worked on the issue, while Rubio suggested that Cruz’s position wasn’t far from his own, noting his past support for more visas for skilled workers and “legalizing people who are here illegally.”
“I understand Marco wants to raise confusion, but it’s not accurate what he just said, that I supported legalization,” Cruz said. “Indeed, I led the fight against his legalization amnesty bill.”
Rubio, pressed on his position on immigration and whether he supported a path to citizenship, offered a lengthy explanation, urging border security and reform of the legal immigration system before allowing for green cards as an option.
"That may not be the majority position in my party, but that's still down the road," he said.
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