Things got heated when Fox News host Tucker Carlson debated Univsion’s Jorge Ramos on Tuesday night about the causes and implications of illegal immigration into the United States.
Their debate came hours after President Donald Trump’s televised bipartisan meeting on immigration reform and border security.
The back-and-forth began cordially as Ramos congratulated Carlson for being critical of the president during his opening monologue, but turned south when he suggested millions of illegal immigrants come to the U.S. “because of us.”
“I never thought I would be on Fox News listening to you criticize President Trump,” Ramos began, referring to Carlson’s opening monologue where he eviscerated Trump for announcing he would defer to lawmakers on comprehensive immigration reform.
“There are 11 million people who are here illegally and they are here because of us. They are harvesting the food that we eat. They are building our homes. They are taking care of our kids and we have to find a solution,” the Univision anchor said.
Carlson, however, was having none of it.
“Let me stop and challenge your premise, which is deeply disingenuous and that is that it’s somehow our fault, corporately all of our fault, that 11 million people snuck in the country and are now demanding to become citizens,” Carlson began.
“It’s not because of me. It’s not because of most people I know. It’s because a small number of employers wanted to pay less for labor and the Democratic Party wanted new voters. I didn’t do that!”
Ramos continued to argue that illegal immigration is a consequence of economic factors, suggesting they are in the U.S. because of “supply and demand,” and that Americans are responsible for them.
“Because we have taken the time to build a functioning country. A clean, safe country with a working justice system and a thriving economy, then we are somehow morally required to let anybody who wants to come here come and we can’t complain about it? How does that work exactly?” Carlson asked.
When Ramos claimed that immigrants contribute “over $2 billion” to the U.S. economy every year, the Fox News host laughed and called it a “fake number.”
The debate became even more heated when Ramos accused Trump of racism, saying that “chain migration” are code words to keep non-white immigrants from entering the country.
“I think when President Trump uses the term ‘chain migration,’ those are code words. He’s really saying, ‘You know, I really don’t want more immigrants from Asia or Latin America (to) come into this country. I want to stop that and I want to make America white again,’” the Mexican-American journalist said.
Carlson immediately called Ramos out for crying racism to stifle intellectual debate.
“What you’re doing — rather than engaging in an adult argument, using reason, you’re accusing people you disagree with of bigotry, which is a little much, actually, considering that you are demanding that Americans who were born here let in people who snuck in illegally and all their family and if they say anything about it — they’re racist,” he shot back.
“I get the game actually and I’m sick of it!”
The debate on immigration came after Trump conducted a bipartisan meeting with congressional leaders regarding border security and the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals program.
The president went so far as to indicate he would stand behind what those in the room came up with, stating that he was willing to “take the heat” to back a bipartisan deal, according to The Hill.
The announcement has made for strange bedfellows, with longtime supporters of the president such as Carlson and Ann Coulter eviscerating him, but with many of his critics praising the possibility of a bipartisan solution.
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