WASHINGTON — Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions, an adviser to Donald Trump’s campaign, made the argument Friday before a gathering of social conservatives that it’s biblically consistent to build a wall along the southern border with Mexico.
Speaking Friday to at the Road to Majority conference in Washington D.C., Sessions said: “I believe that it’s right and moral and just and biblical that we have a lawful system of immigration for the nation state that we serve.”
Sessions, who Trump has said he would consider as a running mate, did not mention the presumptive Republican nominee by name but referenced his promise to build a wall.
“You know,” Sessions said, “I recall Nehemiah returning to Jerusalem and asked for permission to come home. And the king let him go. And he went home — just a little bit of a humorous joke — to do what? To build a wall. He went to build a wall in Jerusalem.”
As the crowd applauded, the Alabama senator added: “And it wasn’t to keep the people in. You know? Give me a break.”
Sessions said laws restricting illegal immigration helps the poor.
Citing one Harvard professor, Sessions argued that if “you bring in more labor than we can absorb, poor people have their wages go down. Poor people have their job prospects go down.”
“Things aren’t going good out there for the American people, and one of the reasons is that the extraordinary unprecedented rate of immigration into our country, particularly in lower skills, and it’s hammering good and decent people who need to be able to raise a family and take care of their children,” he said. “And they’re not able to do so effectively, and I believe we can do better on that. I know that we can.”
Added Sessions: “So the idea that nations don’t set laws, establish who can and can’t enter is not biblical in my opinion. Nations do that, and they’ve done it since time in memorial, and there’s nothing wrong with it. We just need to have a fair system that gives people an equal opportunity to apply and those who meet the standards can be accepted in numbers that don’t excessively exacerbate the wages and incomes of poor Americans.”