“There is no plan to deport 11 million people. We should give them a path to legal status,” Bush told Fox News's Sean Hannity during the on-stage interview at CPAC.
Bush received a standing ovation and thunderous applause from the crowd when he took the stage Friday afternoon.
However, he faced some pushback from the crowd when he defended his record on immigration while governor of Florida, which included proposing driver’s licenses and in-state tuition to illegal aliens living in the state.
After confirming his support for a pathway to legal status for illegal aliens, Bush agreed that President Obama "used authority he doesn’t have” when his administration unilaterally declared that as many as five million illegal aliens would be allowed to stay in the United States and get work permits and Social Security Numbers.
Bush also said securing the border should be part of any comprehensive immigration plan, adding that the tens of thousands of illegal aliens who crossed the southwest U.S. border from Mexico last year “should have been sent home at the border.”