Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: Should Have Sent 5K Caseworkers to Border, Not Troops

By Susan Jones | November 26, 2018 | 11:47am EST
Central Americans make a dash for the U.S. border near San Diego. (Photo: Screen capture/NBC)

( - Representative-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) is among the many Americans commenting on scenes of chaos at the U.S.-Mexico border.

On Monday, she tweeted: "What if instead of sending 5k troops to the border, we had sent 5k caseworkers to review + process visa applications? In addition to averting moral crisis, it also would‘ve saved enormous amt of resources. But we don’t talk about the financial recklessness of GOP admins, do we?"

This followed her tweet on Sunday: "Asking to be considered a refugee & applying for status isn’t a crime. It wasn’t for Jewish families fleeing Germany. It wasn’t for targeted families fleeing Rwanda. It wasn’t for communities fleeing war-torn Syria. And it isn’t for those fleeing violence in Central America."

Another congressional newcomer, Rep.-elect Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) tweeted on Monday: "The people in this caravan are humans. Our political divides stop some from seeing that. Stop people from seeing their own faces, the faces of their children in the crowd. They aren’t a talking point. They breathe. And they need us to do better."

The American Civil Liberties Union tweeted that "Tear gassing children is outrageous and inhumane." (The crowd that tried to crash across the U.S. border near San Diego on Sunday was comprised mostly of adult men, some of whom threw rocks at federal agents, who were vastly outnumbered, U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials said.)

Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-N.J.) tweeted, "Yesterday was a dark day for America. Hundreds of men, women & children were teargassed by CBP as they attempted to seek asylum in the US. These refugees are fleeing unthinkable violence back home. To greet them with tear gas and threats of lethal force is abhorrent."

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) included in her tweet a photo of a barefoot toddler and her mother fleeing ahead of the tear gas: "This is horrendous. We must hold those responsible accountable. Children who approach our country looking for asylum should be welcomed with open arms, not with tear gas," she wrote.

Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) also retweeted the barefoot toddler photo: "The little girl pictured is not only unarmed, she’s unshoed. Yet, @realDonaldTrump ordered tear gas be fired against her. If this is not your America stay loud. We are putting out this fire."

‏On the other side of the debate, Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) tweeted on Monday: "Reports showing caravan heading toward our southern border. People rushing entry points. It's about time Congress show as much resolve to SECURE our border as the individuals seeking to tear it down."

In two tweets, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) backed the president:

-- "You have to really hate President @realDonaldTrump to not understand the problems created by the caravans. He is right to push back in order to deter future waves of illegal immigration."

-- "I support President Trump’s decision to close the border until we can get a handle on the chaos created by the broken laws governing asylum. We must have money for border security/wall and must change asylum laws."

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