Rubio: Deferred action for illegal immigrants must end

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Sen. Marco RubioMarco RubioPoll: Clinton has 4-point lead over Trump in Florida Five takeaways from Florida Senate debate The Trail 2016: Comeback in the works? MORE (R-Fla.) on Wednesday said he would halt protections for illegal immigrants who reach the U.S. as children.

“It will have to end at some point,” he said after an event at Saint Anselm College in Goffstown, N.H., according to Bloomberg.

If elected president, Rubio said he would discontinue Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) even if Congress failed to pass immigration reform beforehand.

“[It would be] ideal,” he said when asked if he wanted Congress to act on immigration first.

“But if it doesn’t, it will end,” the 2016 GOP presidential candidate added. "It cannot be the permanent policy of the United States.”

Rubio’s remarks indicate a change in emphasis since his earlier statements on DACA and its illegal immigrant protections.

The Florida lawmaker has previously argued he would only end the program once Congress passed comprehensive immigration reform.

Speaker-elect Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) vowed last weekend that he would not attempt immigration reform during President Obama’s last 14 months in office.

“The president has proven himself untrustworthy on this issue, because he tried to unilaterally rewrite the law itself,” he said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

“Presidents don’t write laws — Congress does,” Ryan added, citing Obama’s executive action in 2012 on immigration.

DACA, a program created by Obama, allows some undocumented immigrants who entered the U.S. before their 16th birthdays to obtain temporary work permits. The permits are renewable and last for two years.

The Obama administration first implemented DACA three years ago. It does not offer a path to citizenship.