Sen. Jeff Session, R-Ala., a leading immigration critic, released the following statement in reaction to Sen. Marco Rubio’s, R-Fla.,  demand for full hearing on an immigration bill:

I applaud Senator Rubio for his important letter to Chairman Leahy and for supporting the request for extensive open process and public hearings outlined in the letter six of our committee members recently sent to Chairman Leahy.  Never again can Congress pass a far-reaching proposal only for the American people to find out what’s in it later.

What we need, and must have, is a full and thorough national discussion over every component of this bill.  The timeline presented by Chairman Leahy  - as well as Leader Reid and President Obama – is unacceptable.  The committee must have a detailed series of public hearings on the Gang of 8 immigration bill after it is produced followed by an extended markup process.  A sound committee process will take months – not weeks.  I urge Chairman Leahy to commit to such a schedule before the Gang produces any potential legislation.