Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) said Wednesday night on MSNBC’s “All In” that “undocumented Americans” were the people Democrats cared about most.
Anchor Chris Hayes asked, “From my 20 years covering this issue, the trade is this, They want more border security enhancement, Democrats want a path to citizenship. This time around, the negotiation didn’t have a path to citizenship. It was entirely on their terms in order to get Ukraine funding, right.”
Murphy said, “Well, I mean, Chris, that’s been a failed play for 20 years. So youp are right that that has been the Democratic strategy for 30 years, maybe, and it has failed to deliver for the people we care about most, the undocumented Americans that are in this country. This is also not 2013 any longer. When we ran that play last back then, there were a couple hundred people showing up every day applying for asylum. Today, on some days, there are 8,000. And the reality is, is that the bulk of this country does not think that that’s right or sustainable and wants us to change the reality at the border.”
He continued, “So I know there’s a temptation for Democrats, and I know you weren’t looking for this argument, but I think there is a temptation to just run the same play we always run because we know how to run it. But when it hasn’t worked and when the country is actually demanding that we do something to make the border more manageable, I do think we have a right and a responsibility to adjust to that reality. Now, this bill still had in it some really important things for migrant rights, including a right to representation and earlier work permits and the biggest expansion of visas in 30 years. ”
Murphy added, “It’s not a pathway to citizenship, but it is something substantial for people that actually care about migrants. But in the end, all of this didn’t matter because, as it turns out, Republicans are just absolutely allergic to fixing the problem at the border because they are so used to having this be their perennial election year issue. They just couldn’t give it up in the end. So they asked James Lankford to cut this deal. He did exactly what they asked. Mitch McConnell was in the room for the entirety of the negotiation and in the end, even Mitch McConnell voted against it. Only three others joined James Lankford on the floor today to support the bipartisan border fix bill.”
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