ABC, NBC Fear and Smear Trump’s Legal Immigration Reform, ‘Crackdown’

At the White House on Wednesday, the President rolled out a new legislative proposal to reform the current legal immigration system by having it focused on skilled labor and other merits. And as would be expected, the liberal media were foaming at the mouth over it. Their disgust was obvious during ABC’s World News Tonight and NBC Nightly News, where they smeared the move and touted irate outbursts from CNN’s Jim Acosta.

President Trump endorsing a new immigration plan that would ultimately cut legal immigration into this country in half,” declared ABC Anchor David Muir, with worry in his voice. “And from the White House podium today, a fierce debate over what the Statue of Liberty really stands for.

ABC Correspondent Mary Bruce lamented the new bill, complaining that “the bill pushes skilled workers and English speakers to the front of the line, and limits admissions based on family connections.

And what about protections for dreamers, undocumented immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children,” she went on to fret. “… the White House says they still don't have an answer.

To begin the segment on NBC, an uneasy Lester Holt announced that “it would slash legal immigration by half over a decade, with strict new conditions that have some critics up in arms.” He handed it off to National Correspondent Peter Alexander, who wasted little time in tearing the proposal down, “The President's proposal going beyond the campaign promise to crackdown on illegal immigration,” Alexander claimed.

Alexander also showcased the opposition to the proposal. In a recorded statement, Democratic Senator Dick Durbin denounced the plan, saying:

The biggest flaw in this proposal is the notion that there are long lines of Americans waiting to pick fruit and to work in hospitals and hotels and restaurants and meat processing plants. Exactly the opposite's true.

But what went undiscussed by Alexander, was that most of the jobs Durbin mentioned were seasonal ones covered by the H2B visa program. The H2B visa program was actually expanded under the Trump administration, which was something that had not been reported by NBC News when it occurred earlier in the summer.

Those two members of the Big Three glorified CNN’s Jim Acosta haranguing of White House Adviser Stephen Miller over the morality of the bill. “Miller was challenged on whether the bill lives up to American values,” touted ABC’s Bruce. she played a clip of Acosta talking about how the bill went against the poem on the Statue of Liberty. On NBC, Alexander played a clip of Acosta underhandedly implying racial motives by the White House.

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Both ABC and NBC also blacked out the fact that the new legal immigration proposal was crafted after the merit-based immigration systems of Canada and Australia. Both of those countries were often used as examples by the left for how the United States should live and operate. So apparently, Canada’s health care system and Australia’s gun control regulations were good enough for the U.S., but their immigration systems weren’t.

CBS was the only network in the Big Three to take a more measured approach to the bill. “The President wants to place new limits on legal immigration and create a new system that would be based more on merit and skills,” reported Anchor Anthony Mason during CBS Evening News. And after playing a long clip of the Miller/Acosta bout, he noted that “for the record, a poem, The New Colossus was written by Emma Lazarus for an auction to raise money for the construction of the pedestal on which Lady Liberty rests.

Transcripts below:

ABC
World News Tonight
August 2, 2017
6:33:43 PM Eastern

DAVID MUIR: Now to the major development from the White House today. President Trump endorsing a new immigration plan that would ultimately cut legal immigration into this country in half. The measure also favors highly skilled workers. There was immediate reaction even from some Republicans today. And from the White House podium today, a fierce debate over what the Statue of Liberty really stands for. ABC's Mary Bruce on the hill again tonight.

[Cuts to video]

MARY BRUCE: Eager to tackle a key campaign promise, President Trump today made a surprise push to overhaul the nation's immigration system.

DONALD TRUMP: This legislation demonstrates our compassion for struggling American families.

BRUCE: Standing with two Republican Senators, the President embraced their bill to slash legal immigration in half. The bill pushes skilled workers and English speakers to the front of the line, and limits admissions based on family connections. Those Senators described the plan as modest and incremental, but today Stephen Miller, one of the President's top advisers called it a "sea change."

STEVEN MILLER: What President Trump has done today is one of the most important legislative moves that we've seen on this issue in many, many years.

BRUCE: But Miller was challenged on whether the bill lives up to American values.

BRUCE: And what about protections for dreamers, undocumented immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children? The President told David in January, that announcement was coming soon.

MUIR: Mr. President, will they be allowed to stay?

TRUMP: I'm going tell you over the next four weeks.

BRUCE: Today, 27 weeks later, the White House says they still don't have an answer.

[Cuts back to live]

MUIR: So let's get to Mary Bruce live on the hill for us tonight. And Mary, the President endorsing this bill today, but give us a reality check as you often do. Does it have enough support at this point to pass?

BRUCE: David, tonight this bill doesn't seem to be going anywhere. It lacks support even from Republicans. Congress has a long to-do list up here, and right now, immigration reform isn't on the schedule, David.

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NBC Nightly News
August 2, 2017
7:05:58 PM Eastern

LESTER HOLT: To the White House now. President Trump today throwing his support behind a plan to profoundly change immigration policy in this country. It would slash legal immigration by half over a decade, with strict new conditions that have some critics up in arms. NBC News National Correspondent Peter Alexander has details.

[Cuts to video]

PETER ALEXANDER: President Trump tonight vowing to dramatically cut legal immigration by prioritizing English-speaking immigrants with skills that help grow the economy.

DONALD TRUMP: This competitive application process will favor applicants who can speak English, financially support themselves and their families, and demonstrate skills that will contribute to our economy.

ALEXANDER: The President's proposal going beyond the campaign promise to crackdown on illegal immigration.

TRUMP: These illegal workers draw much more out from the system than they can ever possibly pay back.

ALEXANDER: Mr. Trump's message tonight reinforced by one of his top aides.

STEPHEN MILLER: We're saying our compassion, first and foremost, is for struggling American families.

ALEXANDER: Senior Policy Adviser Stephen Miller clashing with reporters.

JIM ACOSTA: Sounds like you're trying to engineer the racial and ethnic flow of people into this country.

MILLER: That is one of the most outrageous, insulting, ignorant and foolish things you've ever said.

ALEXANDER: The new bill backed by two conservative Republican Senators already facing fierce backlash on Capitol Hill.

DICK DURBIN: The biggest flaw in this proposal is the notion that there are long lines of Americans waiting to pick fruit and to work in hospitals and hotels and restaurants and meat processing plants. Exactly the opposite's true.

LINDSEY GRAHAM: This immigration proposal is not going to go anywhere because it really would devastate the economy.

ALEXANDER: The President trying to get back on message with his base, drawing a hard line on immigration.

[Cuts back to live]

Tonight the President insists the proposal, if passed, would be the most significant change to the nation's immigration system in half a century. But saying it and doing it are two very different things for a President still waiting for his first legislative victory. Lester?

CyberAlerts Economy Foreign Policy Immigration ABC World News CBS CBS Evening News NBC NBC Nightly News Video Mary Bruce David Muir Lester Holt Peter Alexander Anthony Mason Donald Trump Stephen Miller