Arizona Republican Senator Jon Kyl told the audience at a North Tempe Tea Party town hall meeting that during a private, one-on-one meeting with President Obama in the Oval Office, the President told him, regarding securing the southern border with Mexico, “The problem is, . . . if we secure the border, then you all won’t have any reason to support ‘comprehensive immigration reform.'”
Via ColdWarrior at Red State, the whole clip’s worth watching but skip ahead to three minutes in for the money bit. Does any term of art exist to describe a revelation that’s shocking in one sense and yet not at all surprising in another? (“Kinsleyan gaffe” is in the ballpark, but that’s not quite what this is.) Of course The One won’t do anything about the border until he gets some political cover from Congress on amnesty; his party wants to build a heavy Democratic majority among Latinos long-term and he’s not going to mess that up. What’s stunning is simply the fact that he’d be so candid, to a member of the opposition no less, in admitting his dereliction of duty. Sure, he could fulfill his constitutional responsibility and try to enforce federal law — but what good will that do him politically? If Congress wants to see some action at the border, they need to make it worth his while. And you thought the BP deal was a “shakedown.”
Painful exit question: Isn’t this yet another example of Obama carrying on Bush’s policies? Dubya might not have been as blunt about the reasons for his own poor track record on border enforcement, but let’s not kid ourselves.
White House denies GOP senator’s claim linking border security to immigration reform
The White House on Monday rejected comments by a Republican senator that border security was being held hostage to a political drive to achieve overall immigration reform.
At a briefing, White House spokesman Bill Burton denounced comments by Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl who told “tea party” supporters that President Obama in a private conversation told the senator that securing the border would make it more difficult to pass overall immigration reform.
“The problem is,” Kyl told the town hall-style meeting in Tempe, Ariz., according to video recording of the session, “if we secure the border, then you all won’t have any reason to support comprehensive immigration reform. In other words, they’re holding it hostage. They don’t want to secure the border unless and until it is combined with comprehensive immigration reform.”
Burton on Monday said the senator’s comments at the tea party event were “untrue.”