War over the border: White House says Kyl is lying about security; AZ senator stands his ground 

A few days ago, Arizona Republican Sen. Jon Kyl told a town meeting in North Phoenix that President Obama personally told him that the administration will not secure the U.S.-Mexico border because doing so would make it politically difficult to pass comprehensive immigration reform. “I met with the president in the Oval Office, just the two of us,” Kyl said.  “Here’s what the president said.  The problem is, he said, if we secure the border, then you all won’t have any reason to support comprehensive immigration reform.”

“In other words,” Kyl continued, “they’re holding it hostage.  They don’t want to secure the border unless and until it is combined with comprehensive immigration reform.”

This morning, a White House spokesman told ABC News that Kyl is lying.  “The President didn’t say that and Senator Kyl knows it,” communications director Dan Pfeiffer told ABC.  “There are more resources dedicated toward border security today than ever before, but, as the President has made clear, truly securing the border will require a comprehensive solution to our broken immigration system.”

Now, in an interview with KVOI radio in Arizona, Kyl says his account of the Oval Office conversation is accurate.  “What I said occurred did occur,” Kyl said.

“One way you can verify the validity of what I said is that that’s exactly their position,” Kyl continued.  “Some spokesman down at the White House said no, that isn’t what happened at all, and then proceeded to say we need comprehensive immigration reform to secure the border.  That is their position, and all I was doing was explaining why, from a conversation with the president, why it appears that that’s their position.”

After Kyl’s radio interview, a Kyl spokesman sent a note emphasizing the senator’s point. “There were two people in that meeting and [spokesman] Dan Pfeiffer was not one of them,” spokesman Andrew Wilder said.  “The White House spokesman’s pushback that you must have comprehensive immigration reform to secure the border only confirms Kyl’s account.”

About The Author

Staff Report

Staff Report

Bio:
A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
Pin It
Favorite

Speaking of...

More by Staff Report

Latest in Nation

© 2018 The San Francisco Examiner

Website powered by Foundation