Immigration has become one of the most highly debated issues in recent years, especially since President Donald Trump‘s 2016 campaign included a promise to build a southern border wall that Mexico would pay for.

Rep. John Delaney (D-Maryland), the first Democrat to announce a 2020 run for president, explained to uPolitics exclusively what his views on immigration are and how he would help maintain order on that front.

“I would go back to the 2013 comprehensive immigration reform bill,” said Delaney. “It passed the U.S. Senate under significant bipartisan support. It would have passed the House of Representatives if if had had a vote, it never got a vote. I was serving at the time, it was a tragedy.”

Delaney added he is confident that then-President Barack Obama would have signed that bill into law had the House approved it.


“That is a bipartisan deal,” Delaney continued of the legislation that never came to fruition. “It deals with border security, a pathway to citizenship and it deals with reforming our visa programs in a way that makes sense across the board. I think we should all put our shoulder behind that because that can get done with significant support in this country.”

Democrats and Republicans in Congress have long been divided in their approaches to immigration, especially undocumented migrants. The tension has only increased over the last two years under Trump, so much so that a record-length government shutdown came about late last year as a result of disagreements over the border wall, a steel barrier that is still being constructed.

Trump and many prominent Republicans have used the occurrence of large “caravans” of Latin American migrants as a way to fuel border security concerns and paint immigrants as criminals or people who carry diseases. The Trump administration also famously began separating migrant families at the southern border last year as a way to curb illegal migration, a policy that drew sever controversy.

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