WASHINGTON (NBC News) -- Immigration reform , with a path to citizenship for America's 11 million undocumented and a new effort to keep out anyone else is closer to becoming law tonight.
The U.S. Senate passed that plan and making news is how it's passing with bipartisan support.
It's big name republicans, like Rubio and McCain who are leading this bipartisan breakthrough.
Beefing up the border is the key to the senate compromise which includes doubling the border patrol adding more fencing and detection gear.
Joining democrats to back that are about a dozen republicans like John McCain.
"This bill secures the border and anyone who says it doesn't, does not understand," said the Arizona Senator.
The bill cracks down on employers, requiring better i-d checks of new workers but it's senate republican versus republican.
The GOP leader is a no vote.
"There's just no way to be sure millions more won't follow the illegal immigrants who are already here," said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.
But Florida's Marco Rubio, a son of Cuban immigrants who could run for president, is pushing the plan.
"Not because i believe in immigrants but because i believe in America even more," Rubio said.
America's 11 million undocumented are more hopeful they can soon start the 13 year process to become citizens
But House Speaker John Boehner said republicans will not approve what the senate passes.
Immigration reform has to be grounded in real border security, it's what the American people believe, and it's a principal that our majority believes in as well" Boehner said.
House democrats say what the American people voted for, by re-electing president Obama, is immigration reform.
"Now it's time to turn the page there was an election!!" said democratic Congressman Luis Gutierrez of Illinois.
The senate's turning a page with democrats and some republicans voting together on immigration reform.
This senate compromise restarts a process that's been stalled for years.
But the big fight in the house, it could last into the fall.
-- Steve Handelsman, NBC News, reports