On Sunday, Kirsten Gillibrand told CNN’s Jake Tapper (who, so far as I can tell, is the only good thing about the network) that her past endorsement of Donald Trump’s racist immigration policies were something other than racist. Because, well, she’s just way better than he is, and that’s that.
“You said Trump’s immigration positions are racist — that’s the word you used: racist. If Trump’s immigration positions are racist, were they racist when you held some of those positions as well? … Back [in 2008] — a long time ago, but still in your public life…you said that you were a ‘firm opponent’ of giving ‘amnesty to illegal aliens.’ You said English should be ‘the official language of the United States.’ You called for expediting deportation of undocumented immigrants. … Let me ask you: If Trump’s immigration positions are racist, were they racist when you held some of those positions as well?”
Fantastic question for the goofball.
She dropped some science on State of the Union:
“They certainly weren’t empathetic, and they were not kind. and I did not think about suffering in other people’s lives.”
How is it “not kind” to believe in immigration and citizenship?
Despite the rhetoric of the Left, you can’t be a supporter of immigration if you are — at the same time — in favor of the opposite, which is the eschewing of the entire system. People sneaking into the country is not immigration. You’re welcome to support people sneaking in; but it’s erroneous to call that “immigration.”
“[O]ne thing I did 10 years ago when I became senator and was going to represent 20 million people across our state, I recognized that a lot of places in my state were different and I needed to understand what those constituents needed, too. And so I took the time, I went down to Brooklyn…and I listened. And I realized that the things I had said were wrong. I was not caring about others; I was not fighting for people’s kids the same way I was fighting for my own, and I was wrong to feel that way. And so, I just said, ‘I’m not going to stand by and do nothing for families that are suffering in my state and in my communities.'”
“So what’s the difference, though — just help me understand — between your previous positions, which you characterize as wrong and not empathetic, and President Trump’s positions, today, that you call racist?”
Back to Kirsten, who doesn’t respond well to great questions and doesn’t provide answers:
“So what President Trump is doing is creating fear and division and a darkness across this country that I’ve never seen before. One of the reasons I’m running for president…is because we have to restore that integrity to our presidency, to our country. We have always been a compassionate country. We have always cared about others. We’ve always believed in the golden rule. And what President Trump is doing is destroying the moral fabric of what this country stands for.”
So she didn’t address the question.
Instead, she just talked about what we’ve “always been.” We’ve always believed in the golden rule? So everything the country has done adhered to it? Explain war; we fought others because we’d have them fight us? Politicians tend to gravitate toward things that sound good and yet make no sense. The gravitational pull is strong with Kirsten Gillibrand.
Furthermore, the world of politics is an arena of debated ideas. Which is to say, divided opinions. Which is to say, division. Any time politicians accuse one another of creating division due to taking positions, they’re full of baloney. “Division” is the whole point — people who believe in and fight for something are always trying to divide good ideas and actions from bad; those who cling to the bad will be left in the dust.
If Kirsten wants to look for division, she can turn to the presidency of Barack Obama; with his words, he created division among races — something which has nothing to do with ideology. And he did so by pushing notions that were factually untrue.
Has Trump created unnecessary division? I believe, at times, he has. But not by vying for a secure border. That is an important idea — and its substance is without regard to skin color.
More from Gillibrand:
“We have never been afraid of immigrants, we’ve never been afraid of refugees and asylum seekers. This president has sown fear and division that just makes us weaker. And so, I think what he’s done is so horrible and so mean-spirited, that I am nothing like him and never will be.”
Again, no answer to Jake’s query. Still — there was an apparent message: Trump’s positions are worse, because Trump is worse. Than Kirsten Gillibrand.
As for her assertion: We are not “afraid,” even now. Particularly of immigrants — people who enter the U.S. via our immigration system.
However, if Kirsten defines having laws regarding who comes into the country as fearing foreign candidates (which would be a foolish definition), then yes, America has always been afraid — afraid of the wrong people coming in; afraid of law-breakers joining the ranks of citizens; afraid of a country filled with people for whom we cannot account. And we previously called that fear “immigration” — a system designed to prevent those things. And it is — in spite of Kirsten’s attempt to characterize otherwise — not horrible, and absent of a spirit of meanness. If believing in the security of actual immigration is “nothing like” what she aspires to be, she can probably count on a 2020 loss; if the senator genuinely wants to understand the needs of her constituents — which, as president, would be the entirety of the nation’s legal residents — she should understand the necessity of a secure border, making for a secure country. And that is truly something we’ve never been afraid of. And never will be.
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