Remembering the influence of Senator McCain on immigration

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., holds a health care town hall meeting.
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., holds a health care town hall meeting in Sun City, Ariz., Aug. 25, 2009.
Matt York | AP 2009

Senator McCain was no stranger to going against the grain — even if it meant causing waves within his own party.

The late senator famously voted against the Republican Party's plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.

He also was unabashed about calling "enhanced interrogation" methods torture. He condemned their use in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks and reminded voters of his position again in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

His stance on immigration is also notable.

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In his memoir "The Restless Wave" he wrote:

"I've come to the conclusion that to get an immigration bill through Congress and to the President's desk will require one of three things to happen. Either Democrats retake the House, or enough practical, problem-solving House Republicans vote for a discharge petition as happened with McCain-Feingold, or Republican leaders break with recent precedent and bring a bill to the House floor for a vote that offends the Freedom Caucus. I'd vote for the latter, but it's not in my power to arrange, more's the pity."

MPR News host Kerri Miller spoke with Linda Chavez, the chairman of the Center for Equal Opportunity, about McCain's lasting mark on the immigration debate.

Use the audio player above to hear the full conversation