Texas Sen. Ted Cruz was challenged Wednesday by Fox News on his immigration stance and his role in a failed Senate bid at immigration reform.
Fox News’ Bret Baier pressed Cruz on the claims the GOP presidential hopeful made in 2013 -- when he supported a measure granting a pathway to legalization for illegal immigrants -- to his current position, which is the opposite.
During Tuesday night’s Republican debate, Cruz denied that he has ever supported legal status for undocumented workers.
“I’ve never supported legalization. I do not intend to support it,” Cruz said at the fifth GOP debate, in response to claims by Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla. Baier then rolled a May 2013 clip of Cruz saying he wanted immigration reform to pass.
“I do not want immigration reform to fail. I want immigration reform to pass,” he said. “And so I would urge people of good faith from both sides of the aisle that if the objective is to pass common sense immigration reform that secures the borders, that improves legal immigration and that allows those who are here illegally to come in out of the shadows, then we should look for areas of bipartisan agreement and compromise to come together.”
Cruz tried to clarify his comments during an appearance on “Special Report with Bret Baier” and said his support of the amendment would not have provided legal status but instead said that he was “leading the fight against amnesty.”
Baier pushed back, citing other news outlets where Cruz said the amendment he backed would increase the chances of the bill becoming law.
Cruz’s campaign has said in the past that the amendment was intended to be a poison pill to the overall bill and was created to illustrate that those pushing for immigration reform only cared about granting illegal immigrants citizenship.
Baier again pushed back and pointed to other interviews where Cruz said he didn’t want to kill the overall bill and specifically that the Cruz amendment wasn’t intended to be a poison pill.