Two Former Governors Clash Over Immigration

By Barbara Hollingsworth | June 27, 2016 | 3:03pm EDT


( -- Two former governors clashed over immigration on CNN’s State of the Union show.

Former Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, a Republican, got into a heated exchange with former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, a Democrat, as both participated in a panel discussion on immigration on the Sunday talk show.

Brewer told host Jake Tapper that she’s “fed up” with being called a racist and a bigot for supporting the Constitution and the rule of law, a charge that was contradicted by O’Malley.

“Every time with President Obama and Hillary Clinton, every time you disagree with them, it doesn’t matter which subject it is, you’re a bigot or you’re a racist,” Brewer said.

“No, that’s not true,” countered O’Malley.

“But dang it, I get fed up that we hear over and over and over again from the president of the United States that every time somebody wants support on the Constitution and the rule of law, that we are out there because we are racists and bigots, we that lived in Arizona have lived with diversity our whole lives, and it’s unbelievable that he constantly… Hillary does the same thing…. that’s ridiculous,” Brewer said.

O’Malley then took a shot at Maricopa County, Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who was found in contempt of court in May by a federal judge for rounding up illegal aliens in 2011 in a longstanding case alleging his department used racial profiling to target Latinos during traffic stops.

“America is a nation of immigrants,” O’Malley said, noting “the necessity for predictable immigration laws that are fair rather than the sort of massive internment camps where Joe Arpaio locked them all up for violating the law.”

While in office, the two governors had vastly different records on illegal immigration.

In 2010, the Obama administration sued the State of Arizona over a law Brewer signed that made it a state crime for foreign nationals to be present or work in Arizona without legal documentation. In 2012, the U.S. Supreme Court nullified three of the law’s four provisions, ruling that they interfered with federal immigration enforcement efforts.

In contrast, then Gov. O’Malley announced in 2014 that the detention center in Baltimore, a sanctuary city, would not hold illegal aliens who had been convicted of crimes for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) after serving their sentences so they could be deported.

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