While the nation was fixated on Donald Trump’s Immigration Day on Wednesday, on Tuesday Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson spoke with conservative media site Townhall about immigration. At one point, the former New Mexico governor interrupted host Guy Benson after Benson said “illegal immigrants.” Here is part of the exchange:
JOHNSON: Undocumented, by the way. If you use the term “illegal immigrants,” that is very incendiary to our Hispanic population in this country.
BENSON: Why is that?
JOHNSON: It just is. It just is Just so you that you know. Just so you that you know and you don’t have to use that term.
BENSON: But isn’t the term accurate in the sense that they entered the country, they immigrated to the country illegally?
JOHNSON: They came into this country because they couldn’t get in legally. And the jobs existed. And you or I would have done the same thing. And we’re talking about now, coming from New Mexico, a population with 48 percent Hispanic… How’s the crackdown on 11 million undocumented workers going to work out? It’s going to be dragging people from their homes. That’s how it’s going to work out. It’s going to be checking your papers house to house. And I got to tell you: what Donald Trump is saying regarding immigration could not be more incendiary. It is insulting to me, coming from New Mexico.
BENSON: Isn’t it though unfair to compare, let’s say, everything that Donald Trump saying to simply using the term ‘illegal immigrant?’ I mean, if I…
JOHNSON: Undocumented. When you go back decades ago, this was not considered illegal. When you go back decades ago, which involve a lot of these 11 million, it wasn’t the same issue as it is today. They came over, they were undocumented, they took jobs, they became homeowners. They became fathers, mothers of families. One of the great untold stories right now also is the fact that Obama has deported two million heads of household. He has broken up two million families in this country.
BENSON: But, we’ll move on from this point But if you enter this country without documentation, is that or is that not an illegal act?
JOHNSON: Well, you’re describing that as something criminal…
BENSON: Nope, it’s a pretty simple question. The way I asked the question is relatively simple. Is it an illegla act to enter the country in violation of our immigration laws?
JOHNSON: Technically, yes.
BENSON: Ok. We don’t have to parse the rhetoric..
JOHNSON: Just so you know, when you use that term “illegal immigrants,” you are upsetting a lot of people by saying that. Just so that you know.
You can watch the entire video below: