President Obama is pushing a path to citizenship as a "poison pill" to prevent meaningful immigration reform, Sen. Ted CruzTed CruzMcCain votes to advance ObamaCare repeal, replace after vowing to oppose Senate rejects ObamaCare repeal, replacement amendment Senate Dem: We’re trying to block a recess appointment to replace Sessions MORE (R-Texas) charged Monday.

"The part that I’ve got deep concerns about is any path to citizenship for those who are here illegally," Cruz said during an interview with Sean Hannity. "I think that is profoundly unfair to the millions of legal immigrants who have followed the rules, who have waited in line.

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"I think the reason that President Obama is insisting on a path to citizenship is that it is designed to be a poison pill to scuttle the whole bill, so he can have a political issue in 2014 and 2016. I think that's really unfortunate," continued Cruz.

The Tea Party favorite said Congress could easily pass a comprehensive immigration reform deal if Democrats, and particularly Obama, stopped demanding the inclusion of a pathway to citizenship for immigrants living in the country illegally.

Cruz's comments came as a bipartisan group of senators indicate that it's nearly done crafting a broad immigration bill. The so-called "Gang of Eight" hopes to unveil the legislation in April, with Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey GrahamSenate rejects ObamaCare repeal, replacement amendment Trump turns up heat on AG Sessions over recusal OPINION | McConnell attempt to butcher ObamaCare is political malpractice MORE on Sunday suggesting that the group could unveil legislation as early as next week. 

On Monday, the White House said that it was "encouraged" by the progress the group has made. The Senate bill is likely to call for increasing border security, introduce a pathway to citizenship, and increasing visas for high-school workers. A House bipartisan group is also working on its own immigration reform plan.

But Cruz argued that the president knows a path to citizenship effectively kills any immigration reform proposal.

"If he actually really wanted to get something passed, he wouldn't be rolling this out as a partisan attack issue," Cruz said. "You look at the State of the Union, that was a divisive speech, that was in your face. And he knows full well that a path to citizenship won't pass the House."

"He knows that it's a partisan, divisive issue and he holds everything else hostage to that wedge issue," Cruz added.

Asked what exactly he would like to see in an immigration reform bill, Cruz said that legislation should include "tripling the border patrol" and streamlining the immigration process for legal immigrants. 

"I think that it is likely that there could be some bipartisan solution to those who are here illegally if a path to citizenship were taken off the table," Cruz continued. "But as long as the president and [Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry ReidConservative Senate candidate calls on GOP to end filibuster Ex-Reid aide: McConnell's 'original sin' was casting ObamaCare as 'partisan, socialist takeover' GOP faces growing demographic nightmare in West MORE (D-Nev.)] insist on a path to citizenship they know full well it will never pass the House of Representatives and then it's just a political football rather than actually trying to fix the problem."

Cruz predicted that an immigration reform plan would likely pass the Senate before being defeated in the House and said the White House was prepared to exploit that politically. 

"Look, they have the votes to force something through the Senate. I think whatever mess comes out of the so-called Gang of Eight, all or virtually all of the Democrats will vote for it and it's likely they'll get a fair number of Republicans to vote for it to so they can probably get it through the Senate," Cruz added. "If it includes a path to citizenship, I don't think it'll pass the House, and I think that's exactly what the Obama White House wants."