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McCain: Immigration plan to be released

Jan. 27, 2013 at 12:05 PM

NEW YORK, Jan. 27 (UPI) -- U.S. Sen. John McCain said Sunday he and his colleagues will be releasing their immigration reform plan this week.

McCain , R-Ariz., said on ABC News' "This Week" he, Sen, Robert Menendez, D-N.J., Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. and Senator Richard Durbin, D-Ill., have been working on the plan for weeks.

"It's not that much different from what we tried to do in 2007," McCain told Martha Raddatz, who filled in for George Stephanopoulos Sunday. "Martha, what's changed is -- honestly, is that there is a new ... appreciation on both sides of the aisle."

McCain said border enforcement is an important aspect of the plan, which also will attempt to control drug trafficking.

McCain also said a pathway to citizenship is a large part of the proposal, although many Republicans are against the measure.

"Look at the last election. We are dramatically losing the Hispanic vote, which we think should be ours, for a variety of reasons," he said. "Second of all, this -- we can't go on forever with 11 million people living in this country in the shadows in illegal status. ... So I think the time is right."

Raddatz said President Barack Obama is also campaigning for immigration reform this week and has made it one of his top priorities.

McCain said he believes Obama's commitment helps the cause.

"I think it's important that we all work together on this," he said.

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