The White House’s leaked immigration proposal caused quite a stir among GOP lawmakers over the weekend, who felt it threatened bipartisan progress on immigration reform in Congress. If actually proposed, Sen. Marco Rubio said the plan would be “dead on arrival in Congress” and would make America’s immigrations problems worse. Attempting to quell speculation on the motive, White House officials are now saying the leak wasn’t intentional.
By Monday, Obama insiders were walking the plan back and suggesting the leak was not intentional.
One White House official told Fox News they were "surprised" that the "draft" language was given to the press and thought the publication was "unfortunate."
"This was not the administration floating anything," the official said, adding that the White House reached out to Senate offices Saturday evening to stress their support for ongoing congressional talks.
"The president is pleased by (the) current state of progress being made by bipartisan efforts on the Hill and the administration looks forward to continuing to work with them," the official said.
David Axelrod, a top campaign adviser in 2008 and 2012 who also worked at the Obama White House, also said on MSNBC that Obama officials would probably "take it back" if they could.
He said that "the mistake here was to disseminate it so widely within the administration."
Some speculated as to whether the leak was meant to ensure immigration reform wouldn’t pass, which would allow the president to use the issue as a political tool until the 2014 midterm elections.
Sen. Sessions doesn’t see it that way, however. In a statement released on Monday, Sessions said the leak was more than a “misstep or clever political maneuver” and is in fact “little different in its substance from the Gang of 8 plan.”
It is a dramatic disclosure of his real immigration ideology and goals. The plan grants amnesty on day one while making hollow promises of future enforcement that will never occur. The plan is a giveaway for the special interests and the open borders lobby. This president will never dedicate himself to enforcing the law, and this plan offers only further proof of that.
It is plain what is happening. The special interests are again in the White House, demanding and getting their favors granted, while American workers and the public interest are again locked out.
Unfortunately, the leaked plan is little different in its substance from the Gang of 8 plan, which is also unlikely to withstand scrutiny. Crucially, both plans confer legal status and work authorization on day one in exchange for promises of future enforcement on which this administration will never deliver.
Perhaps this leak, and what it reveals, may mark the beginning of the collapse of this new scheme to force through a fatally flawed plan.