Democratic Rep. Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey said Congress must “consider all options” when tackling the issue of immigration and wants “tough borders” to be part of the deal.
“You actually have to open the government. This is not the way we govern. But to your other question, I think there’s actually on terms of border security — there’s a lot of us who believe we need tough borders. We need to consider all options and we need to actually fix immigration reform,” he said on “Fox & Friends” Thursday.
Gottheimer said the government must be reopened before any serious immigration deal can be struck and claimed leaders can’t properly govern if the shutdown continues. (RELATED: Seventh Generation Rancher Explains Why America Needs A Border Wall)
“We have to sit at the table to have that conversation,” he continued. “Many of us have been having this conversation for years. We had a bipartisan solution last year. You’ve got to open the government. … You can’t put our security and our economy at risk. That’s all we are saying here.”
Co-host Steve Doocy asked Gottheimer if he would authorize funding for a border wall and he said he’s going to defer to the experts.
“I believe in what the experts are going to tell me is the answer and I’m certainly not going to negotiate. As great as you are and I know I’m your congressman, I’m not going to negotiate this on television,” he replied.
The congressman said:
What we’ve all said, many of us and a lot of us who come together about this and have a voting record on this, we want tough borders to stop terrorists, criminals … drug dealers, gang members — keep them out of our country. I’m also for listening to what the experts tell us is needed where. And that’s a combination of solutions. And I also want to make sure we don’t waste a nickel of taxpayer dollars. Those are my requirements for whatever border security is going to be in the end. And I’m open to all options. However, I also think you’ve got to sit down and talk about how you fix immigration.
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