Republican Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz got into a very heated argument with CNN’s Chris Cuomo about the correlation between illegal immigration and gun violence during Cuomo’s show Thursday night.
During the House’s hearing on gun violence Wednesday, a parent of one of the students killed in the Parkland shooting interrupted Gaetz while he was advocating for the wall.
Cuomo asked him about the tense exchange from the day before and that’s when the two of them started going back and forth.
“What I’m saying is a wall has got no business in the discussion at a hearing about what to do about these mass shootings and crimes that maybe, maybe can be prevented. It looked like grandstanding because it has nothing to do with the solution. The numbers don’t match up and the politics don’t match up,” Cuomo stated.
“Do you realize that one out of every five people that the federal government charges with murder is an illegal alien?” Gaetz asked. (RELATED: Cuomo And Rep. Gaetz Clash Over Misconduct In Florida Vote Tallying)
Cuomo answered, “No, I don’t know that.”
“That comes from the Bureau of Crime Statistics. That illegal aliens are three times more likely to be incarcerated than people who come here legally,” the congressman added.
Cuomo shot back, “They’re incarcerated for coming in illegally. Matt, you know the spin on these numbers. The data shows that citizens are more likely to be criminal than illegal entrants unless you talk about the illegal entry.”
“I’m not making the argument that illegal aliens are uniquely, like, more inclined to commit gun violence. I’m saying that it’s clearly a very preventable form of gun violence because if you end illegal immigration —,” Gaetz responded before being cut off.
Gaetz continued, “You made your point, I want to make mine. If you end illegal immigration and if you had a wall some of these people who are dead at the hands of illegal immigrants who shot them, would not be. That’s my only point.”
“And if you had universal background checks. If you had more intelligent ways of tracking it, but you only talk about the wall,” the host added.
Gaetz fired back, “No, no, no, Chris. I did not just talk about that wall. That’s just how you edit it. I specifically in my time talked about the fact that the state of Florida had red flag laws that we converted our mental health system so people don’t come out of jail and back to their arsenals. Just because that’s what is in your clip, that’s not all that I said.”