Truthdig: Drilling Beneath the Headlines

July 27, 2017 Disclaimer: Please read.
x

Statements and opinions expressed in articles are those of the authors, not Truthdig. Truthdig takes no responsibility for such statements or opinions.

Truthdig Bazaar more items
A/V Booth
Email this item Print this item

Immigrant Scapegoating Didn’t Start Under Trump—It Was ‘Greatly Accelerated’ Under Clinton

Posted on Apr 7, 2017

  Donald Trump’s harsh immigration policies “haven’t sprung from thin air,” but rather owe a debt to legislation signed by former President Bill Clinton, says attorney and Truthdig columnist Bill Blum. (Center for American Progress Action Fund; Gage Skidmore / CC 2.0)

In this week’s episode of “Scheer Intelligence,” Truthdig Editor in Chief Robert Scheer interviews attorney Bill Blum, a Truthdig columnist and a lecturer at the University of Southern California and the University of California, Los Angeles.

 

The two examine Blum’s recent column, “Bill Clinton Laid the Groundwork for Trump’s Ugly Immigration Policies,” in which Blum explains how Trump’s harsh policies “haven’t sprung from thin air” but rather “owe a specific debt to legislation enacted during the tenure of none other than President William Jefferson Clinton.”

Square, Site wide, Desktop
Square, Site wide, Mobile
Blum tells Scheer how he found “legal antecedents in the Clinton administration” that “created the machinery that Donald Trump and his team now want to use to expand the deportation of the undocumented population in the United States to new levels.”

Scheer commented that, although Blum’s column is “startling” to many readers, it reinforces an important narrative: Trump is not a new manifestation of evil, but rather an outcome of decades of inequality. Scheer adds that Blum’s analysis reminds readers of the overlooked failures of the Democratic Party.

“Scapegoating immigrants and linking immigrants to crime—particularly violent crime—didn’t begin with Donald Trump,” Blum continues. “It was greatly accelerated under Bill Clinton.”

Blum also addresses the expedited removal of undocumented immigrants. Blum explains:

“[Trump] is building on what was already given to him by the law. And I don’t think we can just say, ‘Oh, this is the process of unforeseen consequences at work. … When it comes to illegal immigration, I have to think people as smart as the Clintons understood those consequences as well. So what I would like to advocate is that as we struggle for a progressive approach to immigration, we don’t seek to return to the status quo before Donald Trump. Because that was unacceptable.”

The two also discuss the Mexican border and the war on drugs, as well as the economic impact of undocumented immigrants. Listen to past editions of “Scheer Intelligence” here.

—Posted by Emma Niles


New and Improved Comments

If you have trouble leaving a comment, review this help page. Still having problems? Let us know. If you find yourself moderated, take a moment to review our comment policy.

Join the conversation

Load Comments
Right Top, Site wide - Care2
Right Skyscraper, Site Wide
Right Internal Skyscraper, Site wide

Like Truthdig on Facebook