Marco Rubio on Immigrant detention centers: "But look, I wouldn't want anyone to be incarcerated but immigration law has to be enforced"

Marlu Abarca on August 17, 2015
I handed a report to Senator Marco Rubio at his event in Ankeny, IA as a follow up to an earlier interaction with him in which he was asked about the immigrant detention mandate and for-profit prisons. He responded by stating he knew the subject well and knew of individuals who were in detention centers, but the law had to be followed.

The afternoon was a bit cloudy as a crowd gathered in Ankeny to hear Marco Rubio speak. This was my second time attending one of his events, the first being back in June.

Similiar to the first event in June, Senator Rubio was open to answering questions, even when I brought up to him the issue of for-profit prisons owning detention centers and driving federal immigration policy. 

As he finished a conversation with a woman who had also attended the Ames event, I shook his hand and began speaking in Spanish, informing him that I too had attended his Ames event and seen how he had been asked a question on for-profit prisons and detention centers. 

As I was speaking to him, I handed him a report by Grassroots Leadership titled PAYOFF: How Congress Ensures Private Prison Profit with an Immigrant Detention Quota. 

I told him I had brought the report to him to inform him about how it affects families to which he replied:

"The family? The individual? The law, look there's an immigration law and it has to be followed. But look, I wouldn't want anyone to be incarcerated but immigration law has to be enforced. I'm in favor of a reform so the system gets fixed, but we have to enforce the law."

I left the event disappointed in his answer and minimal lack of acknowledgement that families and individuals are being affected by Governing Under the Influence. 

Dean Park
Southwest 18th St
Ankeny, IA
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