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Fetterman turns on his own party over immigration

By Stew Davidson
|
January 21, 2024

Sen. John Fetterman (D-PA) has diverged from his party, expressing his belief that the border crisis poses a threat to the American dream, with an additional 300,000 individuals nearing the southern border in their quest to enter the United States.

Fetterman, 54, shared his apprehensions regarding the ongoing migration crisis and emphasized the necessity of a "secure border" during his conversation with CNN's The Lead anchor, Jake Tapper, on Friday.

The senator, expressing his bafflement, stated, "I honestly don't understand why it's controversial to say we need a secure border," as the Daily Mail reported.

Migration Figures and Fetterman's Personal Connection

December witnessed an unprecedented influx of over 302,000 attempts to cross the southern U.S. border, marking an historic high.

Fetterman, whose wife came to the U.S. as an undocumented immigrant at the age of 7, emphasized his support for legal migration.

He said, "I've been very clear, in fact, that was weaponized against me [by] Republicans in my race, that I'm very much a strong supporter of immigration, and you know, my wife's family, that's the origin story about that."

Balancing Immigration and Border Security

In his discussion with Tapper, Fetterman explored the compatibility of supporting immigration while advocating for a secure border.

He questioned the progressive criticism of his stance, affirming, "You can be very supportive of immigration, but we also need to have a secure border."

His recent positions, including strong support for Israel and a tougher stance on border policy, indicate a departure from the far-left faction of his party.

The Intersection of Immigration and International Aid

Fetterman addressed the delicate balance between immigration issues and international aid, particularly concerning Israel and Ukraine.

He underscored the importance of not neglecting these nations while dealing with domestic challenges.

"Progressives better do that because we can't leave Israel -- we can't sell them out, and we can't sell Ukraine out, and we have to deliver on that," Fetterman told NBC News last month.

Emphasizing the Urgency of Border Management

The senator advocated for a rational approach to managing the influx at the southern border. He highlighted the magnitude of the situation by comparing the number of migrants to the population of Pittsburgh.

Fetterman urged his party to recognize the legitimacy of border concerns, stating in an interview with Politico, "It's a reasonable conversation, and Democrats should engage."

Record-Breaking Migration and Local Challenges

The Biden administration recorded an all-time high of 2.4 million migrant encounters in fiscal 2023.

These figures are limited to known encounters, suggesting a larger undocumented influx.

The strain of this surge is evident in cities like New York, where Mayor Eric Adams has been vocal about the city's inability to accommodate the growing number of migrants.