You don’t have to look far back to see Democrats taking a harder stance on immigration than they currently do. President Barack Obama had tough words in his 2013 State of the Union address, and current Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-New York) sounded downright conservative in 2009 remarks. Now, President Donald Trump‘s latest comments against birthright citizenship–specifically for children born to undocumented immigrant parents–is far more to the right than the aforementioned liberals, but they’re right in line with what Democrat and former Senator Harry Reid (D-Nevada) said in 1993.
In remarks delivered on the Senate floor, Reid addressed illegal immigration and incentives for people to live in the United States without going through the proper immigration process.
“If making it easy to be an illegal alien isn’t enough, how about offering a reward for being an illegal immigrant? No sane country would do that, right? Guess again,” Reid said. “If you break our laws by entering this country without permission and give birth to a child, we reward that child with U.S. citizenship and guarantee a full access to all public and social services that this society provides, and that’s a lot of services.”
“No sane country?” That’s a pretty hot take on long-standing American citizenship policy, which is grounded in the Fourteenth Amendment of the Constitution. It also seems like 1993 Reid would very much support President Trump’s promised executive order, which would eliminate birthright citizenship for children of undocumented immigrants.
These days, however, Reid probably isn’t a fan. Years after his 1993 speech, Reid made an about-face on the issue, calling his past stance “short-sighted.”
[Image via Fox10 Phoenix screengrab]