by Jonathan Strong 4 Feb 2014, 7:42 AM PDT

House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan confirmed he discussed immigration at a secret meeting with New York Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer last year but said Schumer asked for the meeting, not him.

“When a member of Congress of either party asks me to meet with them, I usually say yes,” Ryan said, adding, “I told him everything I've said publicly.”

Ryan has emerged as a top proponent in the House for bringing immigration legislation to the floor this year, but his meeting with Schumer, perhaps the most important Democrat on the issue, means he is more intimately involved in representing the GOP on the issue than previously disclosed. Politico first reported Ryan had met with Schumer.

Ryan said he did not remember when the meeting was and that the two also discussed issues beyond immigration.