"It will pass the [Republican-controlled] House because it secures our borders, it controls who gets a job … [and] the 11 million [undocumented immigrants] will have a pathway to citizenship, but it will be earned, it will be long, and it will be hard," Senator Graham said.
Graham and Senator Schumer are members of the bipartisan “Gang of Eight” senators working to achieve immigration reform.
“I am very, very optimistic that we will have an agreement among the eight of us next week,” Schumer said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “[Senate Judiciary Chairman Patrick] Leahy has agreed to have extensive markup and debate on the bill in April, and then we go to the floor in, God willing, in May. So I think we're on track. This is a major, major obstacle that's overcome.”
“I’m encouraged by reports of an agreement between business groups and unions on the issue of guest workers,” he said. “However, reports that the bipartisan group of eight senators have agreed on a legislative proposal are premature.”
Senator Rubio then laid out what he sees as the legislative road ahead:
“We have made substantial progress, and I believe we will be able to agree on a legislative proposal that modernizes our legal immigration system, improves border security and enforcement and allows those here illegally to earn the chance to one day apply for permanent residency contingent upon certain triggers being met. However, that legislation will only be a starting point.