ABC’s Karl To Sen. Murphy: Why Did It Take Biden ‘So Long To Address This Crisis At The Border’

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author’s opinion.


Democratic Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy, who has been working closely with the White House on a border bill in Congress that has gone nowhere for months, is attempting to explain why the border crisis is not being addressed.

During an interview on ABC’s “This Week,” host Jon Karl asked Murphy why it took “so long” for the Biden administration to address the record-breaking number of illegal immigrants crossing the U.S. border.

“But let me ask you, this is obviously three years in. I know you spent several months negotiating this. But why did it take so long for the president to address this crisis of the border in terms of the flow of migrants?” Karl asked.

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“Well, I don’t know that that’s fair. In the first week that the president was in office, he sent to Congress a comprehensive immigration and border reform,” Murphy began in his response.

Karl jumped back in and asked: “But wait a minute, that bill was to provide a path to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented citizens, residents here in the country. It was not a border security bill. It was an [amnesty]. It didn’t tighten the asylum rules the way yours did, did it?”

“It changes the calculus of coming to the country. And the president instituted a very tough new regulation that does stop people at the border, does the asylum calculation. It, as expected, was blocked by the courts because he needs, he needs legislative action. And Republicans have made it very clear that they have no interest in coming to the table in the immigration and border reform, and frankly, had we had this conversation a year ago, the calculation would have been no different. Republicans have made it absolutely crystal clear, they want the border to be a mess. Donald Trump has told them so,” Murphy said.

“But you know that — you’ve seen poll after poll. I could cite the latest Quinnipiac, but there’s been poll after poll showing an overwhelming majority of Americans disapprove of how President Biden has handled the border and we’ve also seen the flow over the border dramatically increased under the president,” Karl responded.

Murphy replied, “What we also know is that under Donald Trump’s presidency, crossings at the border were at 10-year high, and this is exactly why. I think the president and Democrats should go on the offense because the vast majority of the country believes that we should have robust legal immigration, but they want tighter control of the border. And right now, there’s only one party that can deliver that. Only the Democrats support pathways to citizenship, support expanding legal pathways into the country, and a tough border law. Republicans used the issue the immigration to try and divide us from each other, and now, on the record, opposing the toughest border reform bill, the toughest border security bill in decades.”

“We saw New York Mayor Adams call for drastic changes to New York City’s sanctuary policies. Has the whole Sanctuary City movement, did it go too far? Have we seen a rollback of that? Should there be a rollback of that?” Karl asked.

“Well, you know, we treat immigrants compassionately in Connecticut as well. And, listen, I think that speaks to the best of this country,” Murphy said.

The Democrat senator added: “Ultimately, the solution has to be on the border and in the countries that people are fleeing. I don’t think it’s in the best interest of this country to push immigrants into the shadows once they are here. So, to me, the focus has to be on the border.”

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