Op Ed: Democrats and the Border Wall
By IAN SCOTT WILSON
President Trump’s border wall has been called every terrible name in the book. Republicans have taken so much heat from Democrats and their base for their support of Trump’s plan. We are told it is racist and that it won’t work. Unless the Democratic Party platform has changed so far from the 90’s to the point that Bill Clinton looks like Trump, then there is something fishy here. I guess that must mean that the Democrats have a very short memory. It’s either that or they’re largely dishonest, and that couldn’t be true. The truth is this: Democrats, up until recently, have publicly supported many of the same policy decisions that Trump has been touting. The difference is that Republicans are called racist for it today.
In his 1995 State of the Union address, President Clinton said this: “All Americans, not only in the states most heavily affected but in every place in this country, are rightly disturbed by the large numbers of illegal aliens entering our country. The jobs they hold might otherwise be held by citizens or legal immigrants. The public service they use impose burdens on our taxpayers. That’s why our administration has moved aggressively to secure our borders more by hiring a record number of new border guards, by deporting twice as many criminal aliens as ever before, by cracking down on illegal hiring, by barring welfare benefits to illegal aliens… We are a nation of immigrants. But we are also a nation of laws. It is wrong and ultimately self-defeating for a nation of immigrants to permit the kind of abuse of our immigration laws we have seen in recent years, and we must do more to stop it.”
In 2006 the Secure Fence Act (House Resolution 6061) passed the Senate by a vote of 80-19. This bill went on to be signed into law by President George W. Bush. Included on the list of those who voted in favor of HR 6061 are (yes I’m going to list every one of the 25 Democrats, with emphasis added to certain key names): Baucus (D-MT), Bayh (D-IN), Biden (D-DE), Boxer (D-CA), Byrd (D-WV), Carper (D-DE), Clinton (D-NY), Conrad (D-ND), Dayton (D-MN), Dodd (D-CT), Dorgan (D-ND), Feinstein (D-CA), Harkin (D-IA), Johnson (D-SD), Kohl (D-WI), Landrieu (D-LA), Lincoln (D-AR), Mikulski (D-MD), Nelson (D-FL), Nelson (D-NE), Pryor (D-AR), Rockefeller (D-WV), Schumer (D-NY), Stabenow (D-MI), and Wyden (D-OR). Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, and Chuck Schumer are on that list. In 2003 Hillary Clinton said “I am, you know, adamantly against illegal immigrants.”
Democrats have changed considerably in the last eight years, while Republicans have remained largely the same on core issues. Gun control, gay marriage, and immigration have seen on-off support from Democrats over the last decade. Whereas, Republicans (besides the likes of Marco Rubio and his cohorts), have been fierce opponents of illegal immigration. Here is Donald Trump in an interview with Lou Dobbs in 2007: “If poverty is increasing and if wages are going down, I don’t know why we need millions of people to be coming into this country as guest workers who will work for lower wages than American workers and drive wages down even lower than they are now…I read something today that a lot of people coming into this country are coming in as lifeguards. I guess we can’t find – that’s right. We can’t [find] American workers to work as lifeguards.”
Just kidding, that was Senator Bernie Sanders.