Dems Launch Attacks On Cuccinelli For Out-Of-Context Remark On Immigration Debate

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Shelby Talcott Senior White House Correspondent
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Some Democrats have gone after Trump official Ken Cuccinelli for out-of-context remarks on immigration and the poem on the Statue of Liberty.

CNN’s Erin Burnett asked Cuccinelli, acting director of Citizenship and Immigration Services, about the poem Tuesday and how it pertained to immigration. Cuccinelli answered with his interpretation of the history behind the poem, and a shortened clip of his comments spread on Twitter.


Some on the left, including 2020 Democratic candidates Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris, went after Cuccinelli.

“I think the Statue of Liberty is weeping,” former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright told CNN’s Anderson Cooper Wednesday night.

“I’ve been a refugee twice, once from the Nazis and we were in England, and then we came to the United States when the communists took over in Czechoslovakia,” she said. “And I think that it is one of the most un-American things I’ve ever heard.”

Massachusetts Sen. Warren brought President Donald Trump into the conversation, alleging it indicated the administration only wants to help people already at the top.

“This is just one more way in which Donald Trump and his folks want to make America work better and better and better for those at the top and kick dirt in everyone else’s face,” Warren said according to The Hill.

New York Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez asked everyone to “double check” their voter registration status.

California Sen. Harris also commented on the clip, saying that Cuccinelli doesn’t “understand the importance and responsibility” of his job. Harris made the same comment about Republican Iowa Rep. Steve King’s statements on rape and incest.

King defended his pro-life stance Wednesday by wondering if there would be “any population of the world left” without rape or incest, according to the Des Moines Register. The comments spurred on calls for his resignation.


The full clip of Cuccinelli was over a minute long and shows him explaining the history of the poem. Cuccinelli followed up his comment on “people coming from Europe” with an explanation about “class-based societies.” (RELATED: CNN’s Don Lemon Sued For Alleged Assault)

“Well, of course that poem was referred back to people coming from Europe where they had class-based societies — where people were considered wretched if they weren’t in the right class,” Cuccinelli said.

Some journalists tried to bring light to the out-of-context clip. Guy Benson, the political editor for Townhall, tweeted out the full clip for context.

“Cuccinelli’s getting a raw deal on the ‘Europe’ line, which is being spliced to suggest he’s saying THOSE immigrants were fine because they were white. Watch the clip,” Benson tweeted.

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