DES MOINES, IA - DECEMBER 31: Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) speaks at a New Year's Eve campaign event on December 31, 2019 in Des Moines, Iowa. The focus of many democratic presidential campaigns will be on Iowa in the coming weeks before the caucus on February 3, 2020. (Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images)

Sanders Used to Call Open Borders a ‘Koch Brothers Proposal’; Now He’ll ‘Look At’ Tearing Down Trump’s Wall


Bernie Sanders has given ‘tear down this wall’ a whole new meaning.

The 2020 Presidential candidate remarked during the VICE News Brown & Black Democrat Presidential Forum that he would “look at” taking down down existing border wall.

The interviewer asks: “You said the wall is symbolic and represents […] , so wouldn’t it be proper to tear that symbol down in order to achieve that?”

Sanders responds: “It may be, but you know, it’s how much is it going to cost to tear it down. Should you do that, tear it down? I don’t know. Maybe the answer is yes.”

Sanders is pressed again: “That’s something you’re willing to consider?”

He responds: “Yes.”

The interviewer follows up: “You’re willing to consider tearing down existing fencing between the US?”

Again, Sanders responds “yes,” citing the cost of tearing down existing border wall as the only potential drawback: “I’m willing to look into it, but if it’s going to cost me billions of dollars to tear it down, I’d rather invest that maybe in the needs for childcare in this country. But it’s something we can look at.”

As the self-avowed champion of the working class, Sanders’s stance on illegal immigration is highly hypocritical.

Consider the major takeaway from the United States Commission on Civil Rights Report on the “Impact of Illegal Immigration on the Wages and Employment Opportunities of Black Workers” executed under President Obama: “Illegal immigration to the United States in recent decades has tended to depress both wages and employment rates for low-skilled American citizens.”

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In other words, Sanders’s policy of tearing down border wall – a tried and true method of reducing illegal immigration – would lead to an even greater influx of illegal immigrants and further depress the wages of the American workers he purports to protect.

Sanders worries about the “billions of dollars” it might cost to take down existing border wall but ignores the burdensome cost of illegal immigration to American taxpayers. In 2017, it was estimated to be at least $116 billion.

These comments represent a drastic shift from Sanders circa 2015 where he asserted that a policy of open borders was a “Koch brothers proposal.”

Let Sanders debunk his own case for open borders:

Open borders is a “proposal that says essentially there is no United States. It would make everybody in America poorer. You’re doing away with the concept of the nation state, and I don’t think there is any country in the world which leads in that.”

He adds how corporations are the prime benefactors of an open border, since they can “bring in all kinds of people who work for 2 or 3 dollars an hour. That would be great for them. I don’t believe in that. I think we have to raise wages in this country. I think we have to do everything we can to create millions of jobs. […] You think we should open the borders and bring in a lot of low wage workers or do you think we should try to get jobs for those [unemployed] kids?”

By Sanders’s own standards, he’s sold out to corporate interests, forcing American workers to subsidize corporations’ undying desire for cheaper labor and better margins.

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Be careful Bernie – those 2015 comments probably would have landed you in the “Gulags” for “reeducation” purposes according to Sanders 2020 field organizer Kyle Jurek.

Natalie Winters

Natalie Winters is freelance reporter.

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