MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow was appalled on Monday by "two new hugely controversial" announcements made by President Donald Trump's administration.
"One of them is a proposed rule change that will gut the Endangered Species Act. The other one is a proposed rule change to make sure that immigrants don’t get let into this country unless they have lots of money," she reported.
The host read part of the sonnet by Emma Lazarus which is carved into the Statue of Liberty, "Give us your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free."
"They’re not explicitly going out of their way to exclude people who are tired or huddled, but poor apparently is definitely no longer part of the equation as far as the Trump Administration is concerned," she explained.
"I mean, each of these two proposals from the Trump Administration would be the most controversial policy change in most presidencies over the course of an entire year. They’re doing both of these ones today, this Monday in August. Literally on the same day targeting bald eagles and the Statue of Liberty," she explained.
"The rule change gutting the Endangered Species Act will be entered into the federal register this week and then it’s due to go into effect in 30 days. The anti-immigrant one is due to go in effect in 60 days," she continued. "Realistically, though, you should consider those to be best-case scenarios for the Trump Administration in trying to pull both of those things off because well before 30 days or 60 days, they’re going to have their pants sued off of them over both of these proposed changes."
She then described Trump's immigration rule as being unAmerican.
"Most people I know think of the American Dream as this idea of hard-working people overcoming adversity, coming here maybe with nothing but believing in this country, believing they can make it here because of freedom and opportunity and the rule of law in this country so they can build something here for themselves and their families and the next generations of their families who will come after them because hard work here is rewarded, because you can make it here because this is a country that is fair and has opportunity and no, we do not always live up to that dream but that’s the dream, right?" she asked. "That’s the whole story of this country."
"Just getting read of the pretense of that and saying we’re only taking rich immigrants from here on out, who do you know who came here as an immigrant -- who do you know whose parent or grandparent or great grandparent came here as an immigrant -- who came here with plenty of money?" she asked. "That’s trying to make America into a whole new country we have never been before in all of the 243 years that we have existed."
"What they are trying to build, what they are literally proposing with this rule change today is that we remake America, whole new idea now, because this time it’s without immigrants and also without grizzly bears or manatees or bald eagles or peregrine falcons or humpback whales," Maddow explained.