Kirsten Gillibrand Questioned on ‘Dramatic Change’ in Her Immigration Views at CNN Town Hall


Senator Kirsten Gillibrand addressed her past views on immigration during tonight’s big CNN town hall.

A student at the town hall asked Gillibrand, “You have previously been a hardliner on immigration. You have supported declaring English as the official language of the United States, as well as cracking down on sanctuary cities. When you’re running against a xenophobic demagogue like Donald Trump, how can you stand firm with the shaky record that you have on immigration?”

Gillibrand defended her “very strong record” on the issue and touted the years she’s worked on comprehensive immigration reform.

She laid out a contrast between her current beliefs and Trump’s, but CNN’s Erin Burnett went back to her past positions, noting the “dramatic change.”

“What made you change?” Burnett asked.

“When I was a member of Congress from upstate New York, I was really focused on the priorities of my district,” Gillibrand responded. “When I became senator of the entire state, I recognized that some of my views really did need to change. They were not thoughtful enough and didn’t care enough about people outside of the original upstate New York district that I represented. So I learned.”

At one point as she tore into Trump on the issue, Gillibrand said America needs a leader “who’s not afraid of the fundamental truth that we are a better country when we care about one another, when we believe in the golden rule, when we treat others the way we want to be treated.”

“And because I did not do that as a House member, I was ashamed,” she added.

You can watch above, via CNN.

[image via screengrab]

Have a tip we should know?

Filed Under:

Josh Feldman is a Senior Editor at Mediaite. Email him here: Follow him on Twitter: @feldmaniac