Rubio’s immigration stance sets him apart from many Hispanics

Marco Rubio, considered by some to be a top contender for the GOP vice presidential slot, has provided less support for U.S. immigrants than might have been expected.

The Hispanic senator from Florida, who is the son of two Cuban immigrants, has been criticized from many quarters for his approach to immigration and naturalization issues in his politics. A recent article in the New Yorker examined how Rubio’s position on immigration has alienated him from some Hispanics, as the magazine investigated his much-publicized public spat with Univision.

Rubio’s fight against the Spanish language television station, Univision, began last year, when Geraldo Reyes, chief of the network’s investigative unit, called Rubio’s family members asking whether or not Rubio’s brother-in-law, Orlando Cicilia, was part of a drug trafficking ring in Florida 25 years ago. Rubio’s staff tried to half the story’s broadcast, and most Republican candidates for office pledged to boycott the station until amends were made.

Univision called Rubio’s actions against the station “anti-Hispanic,” according to the New Yorker.

“The fact that Rubio and some Republican presidential candidates have an anti-Hispanic stand that they don’t want to share with our community is understandable but despicable,” Univision Chairman Haim Saban wrote in an email to the magazine. Saban was likely referring to Rubio’s opposition to any form of amnesty for illegal immigrants – a stance he reiterated when speaking with the New Yorker recently, and that is in line with the position of the immigration hardliners competing for the party’s presidential nomination.

In a possible effort to gain support from the Hispanic community and immigrants working towards U.S. citizenship, Rubio will be a keynote speaker during the Hispanic Leadership Network’s “Inspiring Action” conference. Slated for January 27, the conference will focus on HLN’s center-right policies promoting prosperity and restored opportunity to the U.S. Hispanic community.