Indian-American Democrat supports border security but no wall, calls to end shutdown
Indian-American Democratic Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi appeared to be supporting President Donald Trump's move on border security, saying he favours some kind of physical barrier along the international border with Mexico.
Trump wants to build a US-Mexico border wall and is seeking USD 5.2 billion in funding for the physical barrier which according to him is a must to prevent the flow of illegal immigrants into the US. The Democrats assert that such a move is a "waste" of taxpayers' money. The crisis has led to a government shutdown with no solution even after a recent White House meeting between President Trump and top Congressional leaders.
"We're open to some physical barriers. Certainly, there's already fencing on the border. There are 700 miles of fencing on the border," Krishnamoorthi told CNN in an interview on Friday. Krishnamoorthi, 45, said that the president has changed his positions on border security so many times, that it's really hard to know where he stands. "For me personally, we have to fight illegal immigration and protect our borders. I think that there is a lot of support for enhancing border security. But there's no support for a wall," he said.
"But I just defer to people like Congressman Will Hurd, a Republican, who has 800 miles of this border, who says we can't have a cement wall sea to shining sea, which was what the president tried to convey initially when he talked about a wall. I think he's changed his position on this issue as well, but that we can't have," he added. Krishnamoorthi also called for the end of the existing government shutdown. "The majority of Americans not only oppose a wall, but the vast majority of Americans don't want a shutdown because of the wall. And so let's open up government now," Krishnamoorthi said.
Krishnamoorthi said he would oppose anything that is being called as a wall. "It can't just be based on a campaign slogan, which is the wall. The wall has become a big keep out sign to the rest of the world. And that's not what we want," he said.
(With inputs from agencies.)