During Saturday night’s ABC Republican Presidential debate, donor-class favorite Marco Rubio accused Barack Obama of trying to fundamentally transform the country. However, Rubio did not mention that he himself had co-authored the border-opening Gang of Eight immigration bill, which President Obama endorsed.
Prominent conservatives — from Phyllis Schlafly to Ann Coulter to Rush Limbaugh to Rich Lowry — have all explained how the large-scale immigration policies will politically, economically, and culturally transform the nation beyond recognition.
During the debate, Rubio said:
Let’s dispel once and for all with this fiction that Barack Obama doesn’t know what he’s doing. He knows exactly what he’s doing. Barack Obama is undertaking a systematic effort to change this country, to make America more like the rest of the world. That’s why he passed Obamacare and the stimulus and Dodd-Frank and the deal with Iran. It is a systematic effort to change America. When I’m president of the United States, we are going to re-embrace all the things that made America the greatest nation in the world.
As Gov. Chris Christie pointed out, Rubio subsequently repeated this memorized talking point — nearly word for word — two more times. Rubio later said:
Let’s dispel with this fiction that Barack Obama doesn’t know what he’s doing. He knows exactly what he’s doing. He is trying to change this country. He wants America to become more like the rest of the world. We don’t want to be like the rest of the world, we want to be the United States of America.
Rubio later reiterated:
This notion that Barack Obama doesn’t know what he’s doing is just not true. He knows exactly what he’s doing … I think this notion — I think this is an important point. We have to understand what we’re going through here. We are not facing a president that doesn’t know what he’s doing. He knows what he is doing. That’s why he’s done the things he’s done. That’s why we have a president that passed Obamacare and the stimulus. All this damage that he’s done to America is deliberate. This is a president that’s trying to redefine this country.
Interestingly, Rubio did not mention President Obama’s transformational immigration agenda. Rubio championed and ushered President Obama’s immigration agenda through the Senate.
Rubio’s 2013 Obama-backed immigration bill would have tripled green card issuances, doubled foreign worker visas, and would have given citizenship — and, thereby, welfare access and voting privileges — to the illegal population. It also would have substantially expanded fiancé visas and refugee resettlement.
Rubio’s 2015 immigration bill would have tripled the controversial foreign worker H-1B visa program and would have allowed for an unlimited expansion of Muslim migration.
The U.S. has admitted 59 million immigrants since 1965. One quarter of today’s population is either foreign-born or a child of a foreign-born parent. Every three years, the U.S. voluntarily admits a new population of immigrants the size of Los Angeles. Over the next ten years, the U.S. will issue more green cards to foreign nationals than the population of the three early 2016 primary states – Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina – combined.
Yet Rubio has repeatedly pushed for these figures to be even larger.
As Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) and Rep. Dave Brat (R-VA) recently pointed out, Rubio’s immigration bill “would have tripled green card issuances over the next ten years — a population of new permanent residents almost seven times larger than the population of South Carolina.”
Indeed, Rubio’s immigration bill would have permanently resettled more immigrants in the next decade than the population of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras combined. In recent years, 9 out of every 10 new immigrants brought into the country on green cards is from Latin America, Africa, Asia, or the Middle East.
By contrast, at the beginning of tonight’s debate, GOP frontrunner Donald Trump doubled down on his pledge to temporarily pause Muslim migration. Trump explained how his position on curbing immigration distinguishes him from the other candidates: “We have a problem. Nobody else wanted to mention the problem, I brought it up.”