President Obama’s recent comments about border security, which were edited out of an interview with ABC News, amount to a public warning to his former running mate about the long term effects of the crisis at the border under his watch, the panel on “The Five” discussed Tuesday.
“Immigration is tough. It always has been because, on the one hand, I think we are naturally a people that wants to help others. And we see tragedy and hardship and families that are desperately trying to get here so that their kids are safe, and they’re in some cases fleeing violence or catastrophe,” Obama told ABC’s Robin Roberts.
“At the same time, we’re a nation-state. We have borders. The idea that we can just have open borders is something that … as a practical matter, is unsustainable,” he added.
When asked by Fox News’ Jacqui Heinrich whether Biden agrees with Obama that open borders are unsustainable, White House press secretary Jennifer Psaki replied that “[The U.S.] does not have open borders – so he agrees.”
In response, “The Five”‘s Jesse Watters said Obama’s remarks to Roberts should be interpreted as a “public warning [for] Joe Biden that this is a huge problem.”
“[Obama] is a smart guy, politically – he won reelection – He knows an open border can wound a sitting president.”
Watters added that Obama also knows firsthand how a disastrous crisis like that at the Mexican border, combined with inflation, high petroleum prices and “messing around with people’s health care” can lead to a president losing his Congressional majority quickly.
Obama famously acknowledged the “shellacking” his Democrats took in the 2010 midterms – when Republicans with the help of the populist Tea Party gave Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, the speakership – amid those same issues.
“Is Joe Biden going to listen? Obviously not,” Watters added, calling the president a “slash-and-burn divider” who is not the same candidate he “sold” the American people last year.
In addition, panelist former Rep. Harold Ford Jr., D-Tenn., added that he agrees with Obama’s take on secure borders.
Ford said Biden’s homeland security chief Alejandro Mayorkas “seems like a nice guy [and] decent American” but is in the wrong job.
“The White House has to understand that we have a crisis at our border and he’s not managing the crisis well. In fairness, there is no policy to manage there. So the White House has to articulate and promulgate a policy,” the former Memphis lawmaker said.
Ford suggested Democrats strongly consider funding a border wall, which former President Donald Trump championed – while adding that the GOP should in return promise to allocate funds to hire more federal immigration court judges.
Fox News’ Brandon Gillespie contributed to this report.