CNN Attacks Trump Official for Immigrant 'Invasion' Claims but Fails To Admit He Was on Their Payroll
CNN attacked its former contributor and current Trump administration official Ken Cuccinelli for referring to illegal immigrants in years past as foreign invaders, but its report failed to mention his connection with the network.
CNN’s Andrew Kaczynski took aim at Cuccinelli, the acting director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, for being an early member of the group State Legislators for Legal Immigration, which was founded 2007.
The founding principle of the group, according to Kaczynski, was that “undocumented immigration represented an invasion of the United States on par with foreign invasion.”
The mission statement of SLLI was “to provide a network of state legislators who are committed to working together in demanding full cooperation among our federal, state and local governments in eliminating all economic attractions and incentives (including, but not limited to: public benefits, welfare, education and employment opportunities) for illegal aliens, as well as securing our borders against unlawful invasion.”
The group cited Article 4, Section 4 of the Constitution, which says the federal government has a positive duty to “protect each of [the states] against invasion.”
In a May 2007 news release announcing he was joining SLLI, then- Virginia state Sen. Cuccinelli explained his participation in terms of security.
“We face very real security threats today,” Cuccinelli said. “Porous borders and lax immigration enforcement have left us vulnerable not only to terrorist attacks but to increasing levels of crime in our communities. Those already accustomed to flagrantly disregarding our laws do not hesitate to traffic their deadly cocktail of drugs and gang violence into Virginia.”
Kaczynski went on to chronicle that Cuccinelli, shortly after completing his term as Virginia’s attorney general, spoke at the conservative Red State Gathering conference in August 2014, where he encouraged then-Texas Gov. Rick Perry to employ soldiers to stop the invasion of immigrants.
“Understand that he has absolute constitutional authority and the federal government cannot stop him. They cannot stop him,” Cuccinelli said.
In March 2015, while speaking on conservative radio, Cuccinelli charged that then-President Barack Obama was encouraging an illegal immigrant invasion.
“I mean, we’re being invaded,” Cuccinelli said at the time. “We’re being invaded, right? One person at a time, we’re being invaded. And the president isn’t protecting us from invasion, he’s encouraging the invasion, and he’s doing it unconstitutionally.”
Kaczynski’s article seemed to be implying that Cuccinelli is morally wanting because of how he has talked about illegal immigrants.
But Kaczynski own employer, CNN, didn’t seem to have any problem with Cuccinelli when it hired him.
The former Virginia legislator left his position as a CNN contributor in May 2019 to become acting director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
Earlier this month, the Trump administration announced it would be implementing a public charge rule, which would preclude immigrants from obtaining a green card if they are likely to be dependent on government aid programs.
The rule is certainly consistent with SLLI’s mission statement of not wanting social welfare programs to be an immigration magnet.
“[Immigration] is a privilege we’ve offered to people all around the world for the entire duration of our history. But that privilege has – starts with certain expectations,” Cuccinelli told NPR this month. “And for the last 140 years, among those expectations is that the people who will come here will not become a burden on the taxpayers and the government.”
“And again, that doesn’t seem like too much to ask as we open our doors currently to more than a million new people a year that they not become a burden on an already, frankly, overburdened and bankrupt welfare system,” he added.
Cuccinelli borrowed phrasing from Emma Lazarus’ famous 1883 poem, which appears on the bronze plaque at the Statue of Liberty.
“Give me your tired and your poor who can stand on their own two feet and who will not become a public charge,” he said.
Last month, Cuccinelli told Fox News that despite what members of the establishment media and the Democratic Party would have you believe about the Trump administration being anti-immigrant, those being granted full citizenship status reached a five year high of 850,000 in 2018.
“So people who come after the president and the administration, saying, ‘Oh, you don’t like immigrants,’ well, we’re letting more people become citizens than has happened in years,” he said.
The acting director expects that total will be even higher for fiscal year 2019.
According to the Department of Homeland Security, the number of immigrants being granted lawful permanent resident status (the step prior to citizenship) has remained at about 1.1 million people per year during both the Trump and Obama administrations.
That total includes about 90,000 from European nations, 404,000 from Asian nations (such as China, India, the Philippines and South Korea), 117,000 from Africa, 169,000 from Mexico, 76,000 from South America and 53,000 from Central America.
It is worth noting that these numbers directly work against the narrative House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California has been pushing that Trump wants to “make America white again.”
Though CNN and others may find it troubling that Cuccinelli referred to illegal immigrants entering the U.S. in massive numbers as an invasion, the truth is legal immigration has matched and even exceeded the numbers during the Obama years.
There is no other nation in the world that allows anywhere close to the number of people the U.S. does to migrate here.
There is nothing wrong with requiring people to do so legally and calling attention to the problems when they do not.
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