In a series of interviews held this past weekend, former George W. Bush distanced himself from his party on the topic of immigration. On NBC’s Today show, he said the Republican party he served has become “isolationist, protectionist, and to a certain extent, nativist.” He also criticized the fear mongering tactics of many anti-immigrant Republicans. In a Sunday Washington Post op-ed, George W. Bush advocated for bipartisan solutions in addressing the shortcomings of the current immigration system. Through a CBS interview, Bush asked Congress to “put aside all the harsh rhetoric about immigration” and stated his goal to “set a tone that is more respectful about the immigrant.” Later in the interview, the former president also expressed his disappointment in the failures of the American government in enacting immigration reform. He also gave his support for a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.
These statements correlate with the message of his new book, which aims to humanize and appreciate the immigrants that compose this country. It is a refreshing contrast to the harsh anti-immigrant rhetoric currently defining a sizable portion of the immigration debate. George W. Bush’s pro-immigrant stance also reminds the country that respecting immigrants is not a partisan idea, but should rather be the practice of all.
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