Fox News contributor Karl Rove provides insight into President Biden’s inaugural address.

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., on Tuesday rejected an immigration proposal by President Biden, describing its call for an 8-year pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants as a “blanket amnesty.”

In a statement describing the bill as a “non-starter,” Rubio said that before dealing with immigration, Biden and Congress should deal with COVID-19, the economy and the threat from China. 

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“America should always welcome immigrants who want to become Americans. But we need laws that decide who and how many people can come here, and those laws must be followed and enforced,” he said. 

“There are many issues I think we can work cooperatively with President-elect Biden, but a blanket amnesty for people who are here unlawfully isn’t going to be one of them,” he said.

Biden is proposing an 8-year pathway for the millions of illegal immigrants in the country. It also includes some limited border security measures as well as funding for countries south of the border to stop root causes of migration.

Democrats have control of the House, Senate and White House and will likely be united in their support of the legislation. However, in the Senate, the bill will need 10 Republican votes to pass and be sent to Biden’s desk.

Rubio was one of the members of the 2013 “Gang of Eight” that sought to find a compromise immigration reform. That effort ultimately failed. Rubio’s dismissal of the legislation, at least in its current form, suggests that the bill will struggle to gain GOP support.

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The effort by Democrats to pass the bill in the Senate is being led by Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., another member of the 2013 “Gang of Eight.” He said in a statement Wednesday that there is a “moral and economic imperative to get this done.”

“This plan is not only about fixing our broken immigration system, but building a better one that reunites families, brings the undocumented community out of the shadows and on a path to citizenship, stands up for human rights, addresses root causes of migration, and includes a smart border security strategy,” he said.

However, earlier in the week, Menendez told The Washington Post that the Biden proposal was “definitely” more liberal than the 2013 compromise, which included more muscular border security measures. 

Rubio’s statement is one of a number of statements by Republicans that the proposal will face steep GOP opposition. Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., on Tuesday blocked the quick consideration of the nomination of Alejandro Mayorkas — Biden’s pick to lead the Department of Homeland Security — citing the immigration proposal, as well as Mayorkas’ answers on border security.

Meanwhile, President Biden on Wednesday was taking a number of measures to reverse Donald Trump’s immigration policies, signing orders stopping construction of the border wall and ending the Trump-era travel bans.

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