See the video, below, of Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine at their faith leaders/immigrant advocates roundtable today at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Arlington, discussing the issue of family separation at the border. Here are a few quotes from the two Senators.
Sen. Mark Warner: “Over the last year and a half with this president, I keep thinking that things couldn’t get worse, and then they have. I don’t think in my whole life I’ve seen an administration that’s as morally bankrupt as the Trump administration is, and one that has less regard for rule of law, less regard for the values that make our country extraordinary, and the implementation of this so-called ‘zero tolerance policy’ is a classic example…[Trump’s Executive Order yesterday] clearly wasn’t thought through and probably was thrown together in about an hour, which seems to be the way this White House works on everything…The two pieces of legislation that the House is taking up today will not solve this problem and will not pass the Senate no matter which of these – if either of them – pass.”
Sen. Tim Kaine: “We’re left with more questions than answers following President Trump’s executive order. More than 2,300 kids are being held in detention centers without their parents as a result of the Trump Administration’s heartless family separation policy. What happens next for these traumatized families? How and when will they be reunited? Watch live as Senator Mark Warner and I join Virginia faith leaders and immigrant advocates to talk about this cruel policy, the executive order, and where we go from here.”
Sen. Tim Kaine: “America has a moral gag reflex, and this hit it…Widespread outrage over this policy. And I predicted a few days ago it was going to end because the president was going to make a sniveling retreat from the policy because he was going to be forced to do it by the outrage of the American public. And I am so proud that the American public stood up and said ‘yeah, we have a moral compass – you may not have one, but we still have one, and we’re going to speak up against something that’s outrageous.'” The Executive Order still has “so many questions left unanswered.”
Sen. Tim Kaine: “We are going to have to stay on this administration so tough to exercise the oversight that we’re entitled to. They’re not letting us into facilities. Mark and I are on key committees; we vote on their budgets, but they will not let members of Congress – the Article I branch – into facilities to see what’s being done? That means they’re ashamed. We have a right as members of Congress to see what’s being done…to take pictures if we want. How dare they turn our colleagues down?…We don’t work for them, they work for us. They’re responsible for us.”
Sen. Tim Kaine: “We support every bipartisan immigration bill we can find…There was a bipartisan House proposal…and the Republican leadership said no, we’re not going to do a bipartisan version. The two versions being voted on today are both partisan versions…They still think they can just do it ‘our way or the highway’, and they’re wrong…And it’s not going to get Democratic voters if it’s cruel. It’s just not. So the notion that you can throw aside bipartisanship and then say to Democrats, hey guys take it or leave it – no way. You’ve got another thing coming if you think that’s going to work.”