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Rep. Gutierrez: 'Great' Meeting with Rubio on Alternative DREAM Act

Posted: Apr 27, 2012

A key Democratic congressman said Wednesday that he was encouraged by a meeting with Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) over his plan to introduce a pared-down version of the DREAM Act.

Rubio huddled behind closed doors Wednesday afternoon with three Latino Democratic members of Congress in order to discuss the proposed legislation; Sen. Robert Menendez (N.J.), Rep. Charles Gonzalez (Texas), and Rep. Luis Gutierrez (Ill.)., an indication they may consider backing the yet-to-be-released bill.

“It was a great meeting. Look, I am going to meet with anyone independent of their political party or what perceived or real political benefit my association [provides] as long as it does one thing: stop the deportations,” Gutierrez told Univision News in an interview Wednesday evening.

The congressman, who’s known as a champion for immigration reform, said the three members who met with Rubio aren’t yet willing to announce their support for the plan since the final language has not yet been drafted, although they did discuss some details.

“He said it and we agreed with him; today was not a day for us to come together because there is no proposal to agree on. It was simply a conversation opening dialogue,” said Gutierrez.

Attracting bipartisan support for his alternative DREAM Act would be a major political coup for Rubio. It would allow him to put pressure on President Obama and Democratic leaders to get on board with his proposal in the middle of an election year where immigration has become a lightning rod issue.

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