MSNBC anchor Chris Matthews and other prominent mainstream media journalists are warning Democrats that President Donald Trump is convincing more voters that Democrats are in favor of illegal immigration and open borders.
Matthews on Monday pointed out that when pro-amnesty activists and the legacy media blast Trump for being cruel to illegal immigrants, “it makes Donald Trump the last man standing against illegal immigration… the last man standing against open borders… the last one not for doing absolutely nothing to regulate immigration.”
The Hardball host said that Trump’s critics are “so upset about stoping illegal immigration Trump’s way, they are against stoping it any other way.”
He said Trump successfully gets “Democrats to scream bloody murder when Trump does something to stop illegal immigration… and it will sound to many people that Democrats are defending illegal immigration, that they are for open borders.”
“It’s how trump got elected,” Matthews said. “It’s how he’s clearly set his course to get reelected—using Democrats to help him.”
In a Tuesday CNN column, Ronald Brownstein also pointed out that it is risky for Democrats to so vehemently oppose Trump’s enforcement policies.
“Americans have consistently indicated they want immigration laws upheld and that they oppose policies that connote open borders or appear to tolerate lawbreaking; that can be a risk for Democrats who too sweepingly criticize immigration enforcement,” Brownstein wrote.
On Sunday, CNN’s Fareed Zakaria said on his weekly Fareed Zakaria GPS program that “Democrats may be walking into a trap” by opposing Trump on immigration.
“Immigration has become the litmus test of nationalism, perhaps because other sources have faded or become politically unmentionable. As Western societies became more diverse and as minority groups within them asserted their own identities, it became more difficult to define nationalism by ethnic or religious terms,” Zakaria said. “So what is left? How does one define a nation? For Americans, political ideas and ideology have always been at the heart of nationalism. That’s why being a communist could be thought of as un-American. But beyond ideology, there has always been, even in America, a more emotional conception of the nation. And immigration has become a proxy for that gut feeling, the sense the country must be able to define itself, choose whom it will allow to come in, and privilege its own citizens over foreigners.”
Zakaria added that just like voters did not think President Ronald Reagan was soft on communism, the Democrats’ over-the-top opposition to Trump’s immigration policies will ensure that voters will never think that Trump is weak on immigration, even if he loses some policy battles.
“Donald Trump might have lost this round, but no one will ever think he is soft on illegal immigration,” Zakaria concluded.
On Monday, Trump again hammered Democrats for wanting “open borders.”
“What we have is very simple: We want strong borders, and we want no crime. Strong borders, we want no crime. The Democrats want open borders, and they don’t care about crime, and they don’t care about our military,” Trump said.