Exclusive -- Marsha Blackburn on Democrat Debates, Party's Leftist Shift: 'Not What American People Want'
Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) told Breitbart News exclusively she is expecting a further dramatically leftward shift from Democrats in the upcoming second presidential primary debates this week.
Blackburn, who appeared on Breitbart News Saturday on SiriusXM 125 the Patriot Channel this weekend, said the evidence of the leftward shift of the Democrat Party played out on stage in the first debates in Miami on NBC last month, but these upcoming CNN debates in Detroit are going to showcase even more radical leftist positions from the Democrats.
“I’m popping my popcorn and I can’t wait to watch these debates because they continue to push left,” Blackburn said. “You give them an inch, they’re going to take a mile. Now they’re all for free healthcare for illegal aliens, they are for decriminalizing crossing the southern border for illegal aliens, and I want to know if they’re going to decriminalize it for U.S. citizens. If they come across the border, it’s a felony. They get locked up and taken to jail. They don’t get put in a van and taken to an air conditioned building and given benefits. They are for the Green New Deal. They’re for healthcare for all, they’re for free education, they’re for a guaranteed minimum wage, they’re for a guaranteed living wage. I told my colleagues in the Senate, ‘goodness, we should put every one of these things on the floor and call the vote and see how they vote on this.’ This is not what the American people want. So, let’s let them keep pushing left while we keep building our lists–Donald Trump is going to be re-elected president, we are going to hold the Senate, and I hope these guys take back the House. I certainly think they can and believe they can. Then let’s get some more things done for the American people.”
In the last debates, all 10 Democrats on the second night raised their hand when asked if they would provide taxpayer-funded free healthcare to illegal aliens. Many Democrats also advocated for eliminating private health insurance in favor of a government-run system, all while pushing to “decriminalize” illegal immigration–essentially creating an open borders welfare state. The highly radical positions exposed by the NBC debate moderators on that stage in Miami prompted CNN to even announce it would be precluding questions that ask candidates to raise their hands.
But Blackburn does not think CNN’s new rules will help the Democrats shield their leftward lunge from debate viewers this week. She said the Democrat candidates’ views on immigration and healthcare in particular will still be shining through for the whole country to see just how out of step with ordinary Americans they really are on these matter.
“Think about it like this: What they’re saying is ‘take down our borders, let anybody that wants to come come in,'” Blackburn said. “It means we would lose our sovereignty. We would not know who is in the country or what the purpose was that they were coming for. It means we would be paying for everything for everybody. You just can’t do that. The Border Patrol has repeatedly told us, ‘look we need three things: We need a border barrier, we need more technology and we need more boots on the ground and more judges.’ Those are the things we should be giving them. But there are very few people who actually want to open up the southern border and let anybody come. Here’s the one thing they don’t think about when they say stuff like that. I was in the McAllen sector with the vice president a couple of weeks ago and we were talking to some of the Border Patrol agents. There are people from 60 different countries that have come in through those border processing centers. Sixty different countries, illegal entrants into the country. Now, when you walk through one of those centers, you know these people are coming and you say ‘what countries are they coming from?’ You’ve got Syria, you’ve got Iraq, you’ve got Iran, you’ve got Pakistan. They are working with these cartels to get themselves to the border and then walking across. Down there on that border it’s not a we-catch-them scenario, it is a they-catch-us. They walk around with their hands up claiming asylum waiting for one of our agents to walk up and question or apprehend them. What they [Democrats] would do is legitimize that activity and those people that are coming here. The other thing, when you’re in these reception centers, is they have to quarantine people if they have measles or mumps or TB or the flu. So they’re coming in with health conditions that are very difficult. So, no, we cannot do away with our border. We need it, and we don’t need to be giving additional benefits to those that are coming here. They shouldn’t be getting free healthcare and getting in front of American citizens who need access to healthcare.”
While Democrats are advocating these nonsensical positions on these issues, Blackburn noted that President Donald Trump and Republicans on Capitol Hill are pushing back–and succeeding in many respects. Hours before this interview, President Trump announced a safe-third country agreement with Guatemala–which comes on the heels of a similar agreement with Mexico, both of which allow the U.S. to significantly stem the tide of illegal immigration into America. What’s more, the U.S. Supreme Court had just ruled Friday night that President Trump can move forward with his wall–all while Republicans on Capitol Hill, despite Democrat obstruction from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her allies led by the socialist so-called “Squad” of Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), and Ilhan Omar (D-MN), aim to reform the asylum process to empower immigration and border agents to enforce America’s laws.
“What we continue to see if you’re going to have the media in D.C., the mainstream media, chasing the story of the day, and it is always a different story,” Blackburn said. “It’s always whatever is the hubbub in D.C. So they chase the story of the day, and the people in the heartland of this country are interested in the story of their lives. Donald Trump keeps plowing, ‘I’ve made promises, now I’m delivering.’ The economy is firing away, we are getting resources to the border. We are securing that border. ‘I can build a wall.’ Now, this week, in the Judiciary Committee in the Senate, we are going to pass changes to the asylum laws. We are going to pass some changes to the Flores agreement, and give the president the toolbox–and give the Border Patrol the toolbox they need to go do their job.”
It’s not just immigration where Democrats are racing to the extremes, Blackburn said. It’s healthcare and every other issue too, she added.
“They keep pushing left, they want Medicare for All, government-run healthcare, they want it all for free, they don’t want anybody to have to pay for anything except what they say is the top 1 percent, who they say should have their taxes raised,” Blackburn said. “This is part of–you just watch where they’re going with this. It is so far left. They keep tacking left, so these debates are going to be fun.”
Even on climate and energy policy, she said, the Democrats are far out of the mainstream of where America is on these issues.
“What they’re wanting to do is to do away with any hydrocarbon fuels,” Blackburn said. “Killing the coal industry isn’t good enough for them. They want to do away with oil and natural gas. They want to move all vehicles to being electric vehicles, even though we don’t have the grid capacity to sustain that. They want to make certain that they do away with air travel. They want electric trains. The list goes on and on. They want the sun to have solar power and hydropower energy and wind as the main energy forces, but they don’t want nuclear. So, they keep trying to put us in a position where we would not be competitive on a global basis. They want to put us in a position where we would not have the quality of life in our homes and our communities that we are used to and able to enjoy at this point. They’re such naysayers. Their approach on everything is negative. I just continue to think: How could people believe them? Because when I’m talking to Tennesseans generally what they’re saying is they want economic prosperity, they want want their communities to be healthy and vibrant, and they want to have jobs and opportunities, and they want to see their children come back to those communities.”
The next round of Democrat debates airs Tuesday and Wednesday evening on CNN, which will have anchors Jake Tapper and Don Lemon–as well as correspondent Dana Bash–moderating them live from Detroit. The debates air from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET on both nights.
LISTEN TO SEN. MARSHA BLACKBURN (R-TN) ON BREITBART NEWS SATURDAY: