Kirsten Gillibrand on Immigration
Democratic Senator (NY)
"President Trump has had years to bring this country together, but instead he has chosen to divide the country across every single line he can imagine. If President Trump wants to convince the country that he actually cares about bringing us together, then he can start by no longer using government workers as political pawns, reuniting the families that his Administration ripped apart at the border, and stopping with political wedge issues like telling women they can't make their own health decisions in consultation with their doctor."
Maddow reminded Gillibrand she once said she was "embarrassed" by her previous positions on immigration. "Well, I don't think it was driven from my heart. I was callous to the suffering of families who want to be with their loved ones, people who want to be reunited with their families," Gillibrand said. "I recognize, as we all do, that immigration and diversity is our strength as a country. It's always driven our economy. It's the American story. So looking back, I really regretted that I didn't look beyond my district and talk about why this is an important part of the United States story and why it's an important part of our strength."
For those just getting acquainted with Gillibrand in the Trump era, in which she has voted with the president's position less than 12% of the time (the lowest among her colleagues), her past views may come as a surprise.
On immigration, the New York Democrat explained her shift: "I came from a district that was 98% white," Gillibrand said. "We have immigrants, but not a lot of immigrants. And I just didn't take the time to understand why these issues mattered because it wasn't right in front of me. And that was my fault. It was something that I'm embarrassed about and I'm ashamed of."
"I do not support open borders, and neither do Democrats," Gillibrand countered. "What we have in this country is an immigration crisis. You have people in this caravan to seek asylum in this country. Immigration has always been a strength in this country. We are a country founded by immigrants. So we need to fix our broken immigration system. Separating children from their parents at the border is immoral, that's what this president has done."
"This is an act of terrorism," Farley responded. "It's got to stop. But my opponent, Senator Gillibrand, wants to abolish ICE, which since 9/11 is the group primarily responsible for stopping terror."
"I think we should get rid of ICE," she said. "We should separate out two missions and do the anti-terrorism mission, the national security mission, and then on the other side, make sure you're doing-- looking at immigration as a humanitarian issue. These are civil issues."
But Gillibrand said the time is ripe for comprehensive immigration reform. She defended her previous opposition to former Gov. Eliot Spitzer's plan to issue government IDs to undocumented immigrants, saying it's an issue best addressed on the federal level. "That is something I would certainly look into, and we want to make sure that folks have the ability to get an ID," Gillibrand said. "But it's best done in a comprehensive bill because these are all the issues that we need to actually address."
Kirsten is committed to fixing America's broken immigration system--creating a real path to earned citizenship with strict accountability and providing fair labor rights to all workers. While upholding America's security and the rule of law, Kirsten is working to reform our immigration system to unite families and provide laborers needed by our farms and businesses.
Current law is unfairly punishing thousands of young people who have spent most of their lives in America. Kirsten has taken the lead to change this by co-sponsoring the DREAM Act to provide every child the opportunity to get a good education and earn their way to legal status.
According to the New York Times, Gillibrand had: "opposed any sort of amnesty for illegal immigrants, supported deputizing local law enforcement officers to enforce federal immigration laws, spoke out against allowing illegal immigrants to have driver's licenses and sought to make English the official language of the US. She sided in favor of requiring adult occupants of affordable housing to provide proof of residency." In other words, she was the pro-immigration lobby's worst nightmare.
But all of that change, too. Just days into her tenure, after meeting with Latino and Chinese political leaders, she suddenly dropped her opposition to paths to citizenship and her support for English as a second language.
This bill authorizes the Department of Justice (DOJ) to appoint or provide counsel at government expense to aliens in removal proceedings.
|Other candidates on Immigration:||Kirsten Gillibrand on other issues:|
2020 Presidential Democratic Primary Candidates:
State Rep.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Larry Hogan (D-MD)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Gov.John Kasich (R-OH)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
2020 GOP and Independent Candidates:
Pres.Donald Trump (R-NY)
V.P.Mike Pence (R-IN)
Gov.Bill Weld (L-MA)
CEO Howard Schultz (I-WA)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
V.C.Arvin Vohra (L-MD)
2020 Withdrawn Candidates:
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
About Kirsten Gillibrand: