Former Mayor Pete Buttigieg complained on Monday that America’s legal immigration system was not allowing enough immigrants into the United States.
“This county needs more people than its immigration system is willing to allow,” Buttigieg said. “So what happens? The people come, but then they are endangered of all of the uncertainties of being undocumented in this country.”
Buttigieg argued that the current legal immigration system was “outdated” as a result of the country failing to pass any serious immigration reform since the 1980s.
The former mayor of South Bend spoke about immigration as he campaigned in Carson City, Nevada. He argued that his city of South Bend was finally growing in population, thanks to illegal immigration.
“That is almost entirely as a result of immigration … and many of them are undocumented,” he said.
Buttigieg expressed the struggle of illegal immigrants – sympathizing with living with the uncertainty of getting deported.
“This is not something that is making America stronger right now,” he said.
Buttigieg called for “real immigration reform” that would offer amnesty for illegal immigrants.
The former mayor said that on “day one” of his presidency, he would immediately make changes to President Trump’s enforcement policies.
“On day one, we go to the border and we start managing the border in a way that matches our values, as well as our laws,” he said. “With humanity and compassion as well as security.”
After Buttigieg finished speaking on immigration, someone in the crowd yelled, “Take down the wall.”
Buttigieg looked out in the crowd and nodded, although it was unclear whether he agreed with the idea.
The Buttigieg campaign did not respond to a request for comment.