‘You Pander A Lot To The Illegal Aliens’: Woman Confronts Beto O’Rourke’s Immigration Platform

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Jason Hopkins Immigration and politics reporter
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A woman heavily scrutinized Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke’s stance on illegal immigration into the U.S. at a town hall in Phoenix Sunday.

O’Rourke made a campaign stop at food court complex The Churchill and spoke to a crowd of hundreds about gun control, immigration, President Donald Trump and other issues, the Arizona Republic reported.

One woman — Jennifer Harrison from AZ Patriots — asked why he panders to illegal aliens and called it a “slap in the face” to legal immigrants who wait in line and follow the law.

“I notice that you pander a lot to the illegal aliens and encouraging illegal immigration,” Harrison said, which garnered boos from the crowd. O’Rourke encouraged people to allow her to keep talking.

Former Rep. Beto O'Rourke delivers his closing statement at the end of the 2020 Democratic U.S. presidential debate in Houston, Texas, U.S. September 12, 2019. REUTERS/Mike Blake

Former Rep. Beto O’Rourke delivers his closing statement at the end of the 2020 Democratic U.S. presidential debate in Houston, Texas, U.S., Sept. 12, 2019. REUTERS/Mike Blake

“We are a nation of laws, and I just think it’s a slap in the face to every legal immigrant who has waited and paid and played by the rules to immigrate to this country legally, and who have respected our country, our land, our citizens, our laws, and who have gone through the process to come here legally,” Harrison continued.

“To just say, ‘Everybody is welcome here, you all get free stuff and just come on over the border,’ is, again, a slap in the face to every legal immigrant like my mother who has come here legally,” she said.

Harrison also hit O’Rourke for his support of mandatory buybacks of assault weapons. “Hands off our guns, Beto,” she said.

“Listen, on this much we can agree: There should be a safe, legal, orderly, quick path to come here to join family, to work a job, to be able to go to school, to flee persecution or, in some countries … death, and I want to work with you to make sure our immigration and asylum laws achieve that purpose,” O’Rourke responded. “But, what is a slap in the face to my conscience and the best traditions of this country is taking kids from their parents and putting them in cages.”

“If immigration is a problem, it is the best possible problem this country could have. I want those asylum seekers here in this country,” he continued. “I want us to live according to our conscience, to our laws, to our commitments and to the best, boldest, brightest future we could possibly have. Those immigrants pose no threat to you or me. Stop trafficking in these lies.” (RELATED: ‘One Of My Political Heroes’: Julian Castro Celebrates Anti-Illegal Immigrant Activist)

O’Rourke has taken a more left-leaning stance on immigration enforcement since entering the presidential contest. The former Texas congressman and failed Senate candidate said in February, “Walls do not save lives. Walls end lives,” and has called for the removal of existing walls on the southern border.

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