WASHINGTON (AP) – The White House is seeking to keep delicate immigration negotiations on track, as a key Republican senator distances himself further from a draft bill President Barack Obama’s aides are readying in case congressional talks crumble.
Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio’s office says Obama’s plan injected additional partisanship into an “already difficult process.” The White House, following the weekend leak of its draft legislation, insists the president wants the bipartisan Senate group Rubio is a member of to propose its own bill instead.
Senate aides say privately that bipartisan negotiations are in a good place and do not feel as though the disclosure of Obama’s draft bill would disrupt their process. In fact, Obama’s backup bill could end up spurring GOP lawmakers to rally behind a similar congressional plan.
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