On Friday's MTP Daily, during a discussion of the issue of the Trump administration separating immigrant children from parents who are being prosecuted for crossing the border illegally, panel members admitted that President Barack Obama's administration also separated some illegal immigrant families as they were processed. PBS's Yamiche Alcindor even suggested that the focus on President Donald Trump is justified because his presidential campaign "was founded -- in some ways, people think -- in a racist way."
At 5:52 p.m. Eastern, during the show's "The Lid" segment, former George W. Bush administration official Alfonso Aguilar complained about the "selective outrage" of critics going after President Trump when "there were some policies during the Obama administration that were pretty awful that separated families."
After host Chuck Todd jumped in to recall that "Obama was getting protests from immigration advocates" at his 2012 campaign events, Alcindor acknowledged and seemed to rationalize the double standard of hitting Trump as she recalled:
But the thing is that the -- the thing that is different about President Trump is that he built a campaign attacking immigrants, making them -- it was a campaign that was founded -- in some ways, people think -- in a racist way, and then you add to that the fact that it's zero policy. this is not some families -- it's all families. I'm not saying that Obama was better -- I'm just saying, as a reporter, that this is an administration that has changed a policy and made it worse.
She soon added:
And there are a lot of people that agree with you. A lot of the advocates that I've interviewed absolutely agree with you and think that Obama did not get enough pushback for what he did when he was deporting a lot of families. When I was calling around and trying to get in touch with families that have been separated, so many people said, "Well, I can give you families that were separated all the way back under Obama, so what kind of families do you want?" So there are definitely a lot of people who are saying that