Sessions: ‘A Good Nation’ Doesn’t Admit ‘Illiterate’ Immigrants

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions holds a news conference at the Department of Justice December 15, 2017 in Washington, DC. Sessions called the question-and-answer session with reporters to highlight his department's fight to reduce violent crime.
WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 15: U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions holds a news conference at the Department of Justice on December 15, 2017 in Washington, DC. Sessions called the question-and-answer session with rep... WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 15: U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions holds a news conference at the Department of Justice on December 15, 2017 in Washington, DC. Sessions called the question-and-answer session with reporters to highlight his department's fight to reduce violent crime. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) MORE LESS
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January 17, 2018 8:13 a.m.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions preached the administration’s message on merit-based immigration on Fox News Tuesday night, claiming “a good nation” doesn’t admit “illiterate” immigrants.

“What good does it do to bring in somebody who is illiterate in their own country, has no skills and is going to struggle in our country and not be successful? That is not what a good nation should do, and we need to get away from it,” Sessions said, speaking on “Tucker Carlson Tonight.”

Sessions criticized Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) for reportedly reciting during a meeting Emma Lazarus’ poem that’s historically affiliated with American immigration and the Statue of Liberty.

“Not really a case you would expect a Republican to be making,” Carlson said, referencing Graham’s use of the poem. “Why aren’t there more articulate Republican members of Congress making the case that you just made?”

“Well, I wish there were, actually,” Sessions said, before claiming the U.S. should be more like Canada in its immigration policies. “We should evaluate them and make sure they are going to be lawful. They are not threats to us. They have the education and skills level to prosper in America. That’s good for them and good for America.” 

Watch a clip of the interview below:

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