Republicans face a balancing act on immigration

Last Updated: Fri, Feb 01, 2013 09:30 hrs

Republicans face a delicate balancing act as they embrace immigration reform — and no one is more symbolic of the potential risks and rewards than Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida.

Rubio has courted conservative commentators in recent weeks, outlining a set of principles for changes in immigration law that include a path to citizenship for the 11 million illegal immigrants who live in the United States.

After losing badly among Hispanic voters in last year's election, Republicans say they need to address a broken system and repair their standing with Latinos.

But the politics of immigration remain difficult for Republicans.

The Republican establishment runs the risk of alienating its most passionate supporters, many of whom favor hard-line immigration policies.

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