GOP senator melts down defending Trump over child separations


Republicans are going to have a long and difficult time weathering Trump's child confiscation crisis, if Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) is any indication.

On Sunday morning's edition of CNN's "State of the Union," Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs chairman Ron Johnson spent the better part of his interview trying to blame President Obama for Trump's catastrophic policy of separating children from their parents, rather than pressing for those families to be reunited.

Johnson even produced a visual aid to try and blame Obama for the crisis, asserting that the DACA policy was what caused the increase in asylum-seekers from Central America.

But host Jake Tapper pointed out that economist Michael Clemens says that "the main reason for the increase of undocumented immigrants crossing the border, including the unaccompanied minors that you referred to, was the increase in violence in Central America specifically Guatemala, Honduras, not the DACA policy. Is he wrong?"

"Let's just take a look at the chart," a smirking Johnson said, reaching for his chart.

"But correlation is not causation," Tapper said.

Johnson stammered an insistence that Obama was to blame, in addition to other factors like "our insatiable demand for drugs," which he mentioned in twice.

"One reason is because drugs are flowing over the unsecured border," Johnson said, even though most of those drugs actually come in through legal ports of entry.

"We have to secure the border. [Trump] is trying to grapple with that reality, unlike President Obama," Johnson said.

But when Tapper could finally get a word in edgewise, he neatly exposed Johnson's talking points by simply asking him if he believes that the Trump administration has the information and competence to reunite the families that Trump has torn apart.

"So, they are saying they do," Johnson replied, before once again trying to change the subject to Obama.

Johnson spent the rest of the interview similarly trying to blame Obama, and would not commit to holding hearings on the children separated from their parents.

Johnson's partisan urge to blame Obama for Trump's crisis is not all that surprising, but his unwillingness to perform even minimal oversight over this abomination is a shocking moral abdication.

Trump's executive order this week did nothing but perhaps worsen the crisis, and the government has no plan to reunite the children who have been disappeared, even if they wanted to. It's time for Congress to stand up to Trump.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.