Tags: America's Forum | Exclusive Interviews | Immigration | Mexico | Otto Reich | Obama | immigration

Ex-Ambassador Reich: Obama Unwittingly Declared Open Border

By Courtney Coren   |   Monday, 23 Jun 2014 01:08 PM

Otto Reich, former U.S. ambassador to Venezuela, says the recent influx of thousands of immigrants coming to the United States from Central America is the result of President Barack Obama's unwittingly declaring an open border.

"A migration crisis, which is what we're facing right now on our southern border, with tens of thousands of children, unaccompanied children, and in some cases children with their mothers coming all at the same time, is not a coincidence and is due to two factors," Reich told J.D. Hayworth on "America's Forum" on Newsmax TV on Monday.

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Reich described the two factors as "push factors and pull factors."

"The push factors are mainly poverty, lack of economic opportunity, and insecurity in the countries," the former ambassador explained.

"The pull factor is the fact that the United States has basically, unfortunately, this president, unbeknownst to him, has declared an open border.

"When he said that the people who were here before a certain date would be allowed to stay, what the people in Central America heard was if you get to the United States now, in four or five years or in 10 years, the next president is going to say the people that got here before that date or after that day are also going to be able to stay," Reich said.

"So, this was caused, frankly, by the lack of understanding, on the part of this administration, of what causes people to leave their homes and come to the United States."

The Obama administration announced Friday that it plans to send about $100 million to Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador as aid to reintegrate the migrants that the United States plans to send back to their countries, CNN reported.

Reich said he doesn't think it's going to work.

"We've already sent hundreds of millions of dollars to these countries in the past and all kinds of programs, some of which I managed back in the '80s," he said.

"That's not enough to keep people home when they can actually come to a much better economic environment, which is the United States."

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