Rand Paul Endorses Shot at Citizenship for Illegal Immigrants

Published 03/19 2013 10:01AM

Updated 03/19 2013 10:04AM

Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky is telling a Hispanic business group that illegal immigrants should be allowed to become U.S. taxpayers and ultimately get a shot at citizenship.

It's significant development coming from the Tea Party favorite amid growing Republican acceptance of the idea -- but also continued resistance from some conservatives who view citizenship for the nation's 11 million illegal immigrants as amnesty.

Speaking to the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Paul says, "Prudence, compassion and thrift all point us toward the same goal: bringing these workers out of the shadows and into becoming and being taxpaying members of society."

Paul's path to citizenship would come with conditions that could make it long and difficult for illegal immigrants. Chief among these, Congress would have to agree first that progress was being made on border security. 

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