At a town hall event on Wednesday, a black American asked Democrat Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke if he supported illegal immigrants being granted U.S citizenship.
As if in defense of the position, O’Rourke replied that illegal immigrants from Central America and Mexico are the cotton pickers of today.
The audience member had asked the question: “Do you support granting citizenship and American-paid benefits to illegal aliens who violated our country to come here, who fly their foreign flags here, who have citizenship in their countries and whose families did absolutely not build this country, while black people are subject to things that you explained before? You can answer yes or no, please.”
Well, O’Rourke definitely didn’t answer yes or no. O’Rourke, who recently told Stephen Colbert on CBS’ “The Late Show” that he supported amnesty for the more than 3 million illegal aliens who were eligible for Obama’s DACA progam, sidestepped the question.
He chose to first go on a tangent about how lots of people have built this country.
“Some of us came here against our will, some of us immigrated here lawfully … some of us are showing up right now as we speak,” he said.
After talking about immigrants fleeing to the U.S, he said, “And yes, there are some people who did not follow our laws when they came here to be with their families or to work jobs and, in some cases, no one was willing to work in their communities.”
“I mentioned going to the high school in Roscoe, I also went to the cotton gin in Roscoe,” O’Rourke continued.
“And at that cotton gin, there are 24 jobs and the manager of that gin says, ‘It does not matter the wages that I pay or the number of hours that we set, there is no one born in Roscoe … or Texas or this country who is willing to work.'”
“But there are immigrants who are coming from Central America or Mexico or other parts of the world to Roscoe to work these jobs and to help build our economy.”
You can watch the awkward interchange above.
Ouch. Sound familiar? Yes, you’ve heard this line of thinking before — it’s the same reasoning defenders of American slavery used in the 18th and 19th centuries.
As slavery was challenged by American abolitionists by abolitionists, among the justifications pro-slavery groups used was that slavery was necessary for the country’s agriculture — or, in O’Rourke’s words, to “build our economy.”
Slave owners knew their livelihood was based on the unpaid labor of enslaved blacks and saw the abolition of slavery as a threat to that livelihood. And preventing that threat from becoming a reality outweighed any moral qualms they might have had about owning their fellow human beings as property.
But the left’s modern myth that there aren’t enough hard-working Americans to fill all of the nation’s job openings simply isn’t true. And it hurts working and middle-class Americans disproportionately because they’re the ones who are forced to compete with cheaper labor from illegal immigrants.
In fact, studies found that African-American men are often hit the hardest when massive numbers of low-paid foreign laborers enter the market.
Next time, O’Rourke, maybe try just answering yes or no. At least it’ll keep your unprincipled ideology to yourself.
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