Now that media-savvy congressional Democrats like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez have brought attention to the humanitarian crisis on the U.S.-Mexico border caused by Congress’s refusal to fix our exploited immigration laws, political pundits are having to eat their own words from just a few months ago claiming that the border crisis was manufactured by President Trump as a political stunt.
Last week, before President Trump departed for the G20 Summit in Japan, he told reporters on the White House lawn that his critics are now seeing he was right all along.
“It’s humanitarian aid, it’s very important and I think that a lot of people are starting to realize that I was right when I said we have a crisis at the border,” Trump said. “…A crisis at the border wasn’t a manufactured crisis, which they were saying, it wasn’t manufactured at all. We have a crisis at the border.”
So who are the people he’s referring to? Many of the journalism world’s favorite pundits and media institutions. Here are the receipts.
1. Reporter Jim Acosta’s Self-Own at the Wall
CNN Chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta traveled to the U.S.-Mexico border in January this year, where he thought he could record a clever video of him next to a steel portion of the border wall. Instead, he recorded a self-own demonstrating Trump’s point, that walls do indeed work.
“I found some steel slats down on the border,” wrote Acosta on Twitter. “But I don’t see anything resembling a national emergency situation.. at least not in the McAllen, Texas, area of the border where Trump will be today.”
I found some steel slats down on the border. But I don’t see anything resembling a national emergency situation.. at least not in the McAllen TX area of the border where Trump will be today. pic.twitter.com/KRoLdszLUu
— Jim Acosta (@Acosta) January 10, 2019
2. ‘Morning Joe’ Described the Crisis as Manufactured
“This is a manufactured crisis. At the heart of this whole thing are a whole bunch of lies,” MSNBC’S Eddie Glaude Jr. said on “Morning Joe” in January.
Here he is making the same statement on Twitter in November last year.
This is a completely manufactured crisis driven by the racism of POTUS. It enrages me. https://t.co/NtNMzeouhx
— Eddie S. Glaude Jr. (@esglaude) November 25, 2018
3. CNN Anchor Don Lemon, the ‘Manufactured’ Crisis Broken Record
Don Lemon, perhaps the worst offender of border crisis denial, discussed how the border was a “manufactured” crisis throughout the early months of 2019.
CNN's @DonLemon: "All of this disruption and chaos and the government is still shut down because of a manufactured crisis … Remember when the President said, ‘I alone can fix it?' Guess what? It's really true this time. The President can fix this. The question is, will he?" pic.twitter.com/TXjlgNaafU
— CNN Tonight (@CNNTonight) January 18, 2019
Lemon brought in his colleague Chris Cuomo to discuss their fears that people will actually believe Trump when he says there is a national emergency happening along the U.S.-Mexico border.
CNN's Don Lemon is worried people will believe Trump's speech on the southern border crisis: "But do you think it should be — I don't know — a delay of some sort, and then you can — because people believe it. Trump will say what he has to say. People will believe it…" pic.twitter.com/H91aHzuxU4
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) January 8, 2019
“Here is a really, really disgraceful thing, okay? You listening? All of this, this whole mess, is manufactured. It’s a manufactured crisis. A non-crisis at the border that’s really not fooling anybody. People go, ‘Oh, it’s a crisis, it’s a crisis.’ They know it’s not a crisis. That’s all for political expediency,” Lemon said on Feb. 14.
4. Joe Scarborough: Americans are ‘Stupid’ for Believing There’s a Border Crisis
On Jan. 8th, MSNBC host Joe Scarborough asked, “Why in the world would the networks run Donald Trump’s address tonight when we know that Donald Trump is going to be using it to spread these lies?”
“He is going to be telling nothing but lies and falsehoods, and he’s going to be twisting reality,” he said. “And at this point I’ve got to say, how stupid are Americans who still believe there’s a crisis on the southern border?”
5. Anderson Cooper: The Number of Migrants Seeking Asylum Has Slowed to a ‘Trickle’
“Now, it’s not our job to advocate for or against a given policy,” Cooper said on Jan. 8. “It’s our job to call out the dishonest pursuit of it. So, as we wait for the president to speak about what he calls the crisis on the border, we’re starting with the crisis of credibility he’s created for himself.”
“The number of people able to apply for asylum each day at a legal point of entry, that’s been slowed intentionally to a trickle. One intelligence official has had enough of what he or she says as all the misrepresentation telling CNN, quote, no one is saying this is a crisis except them,” he said.
Ironically, CNN titled this segment, “#KeepingThemHonest”
6. The New York Times’ ‘The Daily’ Says None of Trump’s Concerns Are True
The popular podcast produced by the New York Times, “The Daily,” reported on Trump’s claims that the border is a crisis on Jan. 8. The report describes President Trump’s concerns about the border as if they are outlandish, then spends 15 minutes explaining why they are not true. In hindsight, it seems that the president was right all along.
“It’s also grown so that now when the president describes this crisis, he doesn’t just talk about illegal immigration, he talks about anybody who is crossing the border for any reason at all,” said New York Times reporter Caitlin Dickerson. “All of it is a crisis he says and the only way to stop this crisis he describes is by building a wall.”
“At the risk of over-simplifying, none of it is true. Just to be clear, there is no significant body of research to back up any of these ideas even though we hear them repeated all the time,” she said.
7. Univision Journalist Jorge Ramos: Trump Invented the Invasion
“There’s no crisis,” Univision’s Jorge Ramos said on “Anderson Cooper 360” in January. “It’s a manufactured crisis.”
But Ramos went all out to make his point. He penned a New York Times column claiming that Trump, “invented an invasion,” and posted on his own social media accounts that the crisis was only in the President’s head.
8. The New York Times Editorial Board Says Trump Dreamed Up the Crisis
In a Nov. 12, 2018 op-ed, The New York Times editorial board criticized Trump for his concern with securing the border.
“Mr. Trump’s claim is that what’s happening hundreds of miles south of the United States-Mexico border ‘has precipitated a crisis’ requiring extreme measures,” they wrote. “He creates nonexistent threats, generates manufactured fears.”