Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., suggested Tuesday on CNN that the best way to solve the illegal immigration crisis is to simply legalize more immigration.
CNN anchor and chief Washington correspondent Jake Tapper observed that the number of arrests at the border has spiked, and asked for Jayapal’s thoughts on how blue states can share the burden.
Jayapal responded by suggesting that they already do, and appeared to take a swipe at Republican leaders like Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.
“Well, blue states already share the burden, because people do actually go and get transported across the country to different states. We have a lot of people that we welcome into Washington state, and we’re proud of that, but they don’t do it by being tricked to get on a bus and then being shipped to places that aren’t ready to receive them,” Jayapal replied. “That’s number one.”
She followed by suggesting that Republicans worsened the crisis and have no interest in solving it.
“Number two, Republicans have no interest in trying to fix this. Don’t forget, Jake, that when Donald Trump was president, in March of 2019, he actually ended the support that we were giving to Central American countries to actually stop — you know, help aid people in their countries so that they wouldn’t necessarily feel that they had to make the journey here,” Jayapal claimed.
The congresswoman then appeared to suggest that Trump, by restricting immigration, somehow caused a spike of mass illegal immigration.
“Number two, [Trump] put in place all these things that eliminated legal ways for people to come to this country. Let me just tell you that when we said to Haitians that they could actually come to the ports of entry and there was a legal way for them to be able to get into this country, then all of a sudden, that’s what they did. 97 percent of Haitians do it that way,” she claimed.
Jayapal claimed that “If we had legal processes, people would use those legal processes.”
She then followed by suggesting that there has been too much emphasis on funding border security.
“And finally, don’t tell me we need more money at the border,” she said. “We have continued to increase money at the border, but we haven’t done it by also fixing the legal immigration system and providing people the opportunity and ways to come in here legally.”
California Democrat Rep. Raul Ruiz similarly blamed Republicans for making the immigration and border crisis worse during a Tuesday interview on MSNBC.