While Mitt Romney is wrapped up discussing foreign policy on an overseas trip, his former Republican presidential foes are busy trying to reshape his immigration policy. Two stories over the weekend suggest that Senator John McCain and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani are mentioned as attempting to influence, and perhaps even rewrite, Candidate Romney’s immigration stance.
In an interview with Spanish news agency EFE, Giuliani said he was confident that a President Romney would pass immigration reform, provided he has a Republican Congress. Though vague regarding what kind of “immigration reform” he meant, Giuliani implied that Romney might support amnesty for “the undocumented who are living here and who comply with the laws and are working.”
McCain’s influence on Romney’s immigration plans served as the lead paragraph for Howard Kurtz’s Newsweek/Daily Beast story “John McCain Stages Romney Intervention.” Kurtz writes that McCain’s involvement began after the former governor suggested self-deportation as an option for illegal aliens during a Republican primary debate. Apparently McCain and fellow amnesty advocate Senator Lindsay Graham (R-S.C.) felt it was necessary to tell Romney “to tone down the rhetoric,” lest he lose coveted Hispanic voters.
For his part, Romney has largely avoided laying out his immigration policy since securing the Republican nomination, even in the midst of a Supreme Court decision in Arizona’s SB 1070 and President Obama’s executive amnesty. However, there is little doubt that the subject will come up during the presidential debate – the first of which is slated for October 3.