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Sen. Bennet: Symbol of US Is Statue of Liberty, Not Trump’s ‘Pathetic Attempt to Build a Wall’

Craig Millward
By Craig Millward | July 8, 2019 | 3:16 PM EDT

Senator Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) (Screenshot)

Speaking on “Fox News Sunday,” Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), and Democratic presidential primary candidate, said that we shouldn’t “make our border into a symbol of nativist hostility,” and further suggested, “the symbol of this country is the Statue of Liberty, not Donald Trump’s pathetic attempt to build a wall.”

“As I said earlier, we are a strong and powerful country,” Bennet said. “We are supposed to lead humanity, not make our border into a symbol of nativist hostility. That should be an embarrassment for everybody. Our- the symbol of this country is the Statue of Liberty, not Donald Trump’s pathetic attempt to build a wall, which he’s been unable to do because he can’t even get Republicans to support it.”

Sen. Michael Bennet’s comments came after Fox News Sunday’s Perino discussed immigration policy, referencing a statement made by former DHS Secretary for President Obama Jeh Johnson, that decriminalizing border crossings “is tantamount to declaring publicly that we have open borders … that is unworkable, unwise, and does not have the support of a majority of the American people or the Congress,” and asking Sen. Bennet, “Do you feel like the Democratic party has gone so far left that people look at President Trump’s position as being much more reasonable?”

Bennet said, “I was part of the Gang of Eight that wrote the immigration bill in 2013 that passed the Senate with 68 votes. It was a bipartisan bill. Donald Trump has said nothing, nothing good about it. He’s only said bad things about it. That bill had $46 billion of border security in it. His 6 billion [dollars] for his ineffective wall is a joke compared to what we had. We had 21st Century technology. You could see every inch of the border—”

Host Dana Perino interjected “Ok, as president, then, how would you get Congress to actually pass something?”

“I would put something in front of Congress that’s actually popular with the American people. Donald Trump could not get his wall through a Republican majority House and Senate,” Bennet responded. “And now, of course, he can’t get it through a divided House and Senate. I would bring back the Gang of Eight Bill, update it for the three years that have gone by, and I would add to it work that we need to do on the refugee crisis on the border. 

“The president is acting like we are some weak, pathetic country. We have the ability to treat human beings humanely. We have the ability to lead our hemisphere in a discussion about how to deal with this refugee crisis and what refugees we’re going to take and what refugees others are going to take. And we have the, we have the responsibility to secure our border and to do what needs to be done internally.”

“But do you think that the president is not saying that?” asked Perino. “I mean, he is saying, specifically, job number one is to secure the border. Would you support the changes in the asylum laws that he is suggesting?”

Bennet responded “I think that he’s saying it. I think he’s not doing it. He goes down there and stands next to what he calls steel slats that were built during the Obama administration or at the beginning of the Trump administration—”

“But let’s focus on the asylum laws for a moment. Would you support the changes there?” Perino asked. 

“I haven’t seen a proposal, so I can’t give you an answer on that. I do believe that we need to lead a discussion in the hemisphere about how to deal humanely with other human beings in this country,” Sen. Bennet responded. “As I said earlier, we are a strong and powerful country. We are supposed to lead humanity, not make our border into a symbol of nativist hostility. That should be an embarrassment for everybody. Our— The symbol of this country is the Statue of Liberty, not Donald Trump’s pathetic attempt to build a wall, which he’s been unable to do because he can’t even get Republicans to support it.”

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