August 6, 2022

HOW IT STARTED:

JIM ACOSTA: What you’re proposing, or what the President is proposing, does not sound like it’s in keeping with American tradition when it comes to immigration. The Statue of Liberty says, “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” It doesn’t say anything about speaking English or being able to be a computer programmer. Aren’t you trying to change what it means to be an immigrant coming into this country if you’re telling them you have to speak English? Can’t people learn how to speak English when they get here?

STEPHEN MILLER: Well, first of all, right now it’s a requirement that to be naturalized you have to speak English. So the notion that speaking English wouldn’t be a part of immigration would actually be very ahistorical. Secondly, I don’t want to get into a whole thing about history here, but the Statue of Liberty is a symbol of liberty lighting the world. It’s a symbol of American liberty lighting the world. The poem that you’re referring to was added later. It’s not actually a part of the original Statue of Liberty. But more fundamentally —

ACOSTA: So, you’re saying that that does not represent what the country has always thought of as immigration coming into this country?

—“The White House’s Stephen Miller Destroys CNN: ‘Cosmopolitan,’ ‘Outrageous,’ ‘Ignorant,’ ‘Biased,’” Scott Whitlock, NewsBusters, August 2nd, 2017.

How it’s going:

Related: NPR reports GOP governors had ‘no plan for what came next’ after busing migrants to DC.

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