Outgoing Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) derailed a CNN discussion on Tuesday about the thousands of undocumented immigrants arriving in the U.S. from Central America by calling them “invaders” and linking them to at least one rape case and an auto accident from six years ago.
“Foreign nationals that have come into the United States are between 300- to 500,000,” Bachmann told an incredulous Crossfire co-host Van Jones. “My heart is broken for a female college student in Minnesota who was raped, murdered and mutilated by a foreign national who came into our country. We had a school bus full of kids in Minnesota — four children were killed on that school bus because an illegal alien driving a van went into that schoolbus.”
“There are lines that can’t be crossed here,” Jones responded. “I’m sorry, congresswoman. Are you gonna scapegoat children for the crime of this despicable person?”
While it’s unclear which rape case Bachmann was referring to, the crash she alluded to was likely the 2008 accident that resulted in the deaths of two 9-year-old boys, a 12-year-old boy, and a 13-year-old boy riding on the bus. At the time, several conservative media outlets seized upon the fact that the driver of the van, 23-year-old Alianiss Morales, was an undocumented immigrant to criticize U.S. immigration policy.
“My tears are crying for the family members who lost four little children on a school bus in Minnesota,” Bachmann continued, before ceding the floor to Jones for a second.
“We should stand with those children, but we should not scapegoat every one of these kids for that despicable crime,” he said. “You know better as a congressperson than to lay at the feet of these children the acts of a despicable criminal.”
“Don’t scapegoat the American people,” Bachmann countered. “Van, don’t scapegoat the American people right now who are losing jobs.”
Bachmann, who has taken 23 foster children into her family, also described the increase in “unaccompanied minors” primarily from El Salvador, Nicaragua and Honduras as an “invasion.”
“We have foreign nationals who are coming across the border from countries like Yemen, Iran, Iraq,” she said.
Watch the discussion, as aired on CNN on Tuesday, below.
Audience breaks into applause as Vindman explains why he’s not afraid of testifying against Trump
Republican efforts to undermine Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman apparently failed to persuade the audience in the impeachment hearing room.
The National Security Council staffer was showered with applause after reading the closing portions of his opening statement for a second time at the request of Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY).
"Can you read the last paragraph for me again, the second-to-last one, can you read that again for me?" Maloney said. "I think the American public deserves to have it again."
Vindman agreed, and said his father would probably appreciate that.
"Dad, my sitting here today in the U.S. Capitol, talking to our elected officials, is proof that you made the right decision 40 years ago to leave the Soviet Union and come here to the United States of America in search of a better life for our family," Vindman said. "Do not worry, I'll be fine for telling the truth."
‘I did my job’: Lt. Col Vindman fends off Jim Jordan’s disrespectful attack on his service
Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, a national security aide, pushed back on suggestions made by Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) that he failed to do his job correctly when he reported President Donald Trump's alleged attempted bribery of Ukraine's president.
At a House impeachment hearing, Jordan asked Vindman why he had gone to a attorney for an advice on Trump's behavior after he was unable to report it to a supervisor.
"You not only didn't go to your boss... you went straight to your lawyer," Jordan said.
"I did my core function, which is coordination," Vindman explained. "I spoke to the appropriate people within the inner-agency and then circling back around, [my attorney] told me not to talk to anybody."
Eric Swalwell debunks Elise Stefanik’s entire defense of Trump in just 15 seconds
Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) on Tuesday quickly took apart Rep. Elise Stefanik's (R-NY) defense of President Donald Trump during public impeachment hearings.
While questioning Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, Stefanik made a point of emphasizing delivering military aid to Ukraine requires ensuring that the country is working to root out corruption.
"You testified that you understood that Congress had passed, under the Ukrainian Security Assistance Initiative, a legal obligation to certify that corruption is being addressed?" she asked Vindman.
"That is correct," he replied.
"So for the public listening, we are not just talking about President Trump focusing on anti-corruption in Ukraine," she said. "But it is so critical, so important that when hard-earned taxpayer dollars are given to foreign nations that, by law, overwhelmingly bipartisan support requires anti-corruption in Ukraine in order to get U.S. taxpayer-funded aid."