Jill Biden: Let Asylum Seekers In; Fill Empty Rural American Communities
DES MOINES, Iowa — Dr. Jill Biden told a small gathering at the Ericson Public Library in Boone, Iowa on Tuesday that former Vice President Joe Biden believes in letting asylum seekers into the U.S., and that immigrants would be needed to fill areas of the country currently being depopulated.
Dr. Biden, who served as Second Lady during the Obama-Biden administration from 2009 to 2017, was touring the state ahead of the Democrat debate at Drake University Tuesday evening.
The gathering in Boone featured roughly 20 senior citizens from the area, along with about a dozen members of the press.
One resident asked her about Joe Biden’s “attitude toward immigrants and refugees.” She answered that he believed the U.S. needed to provide a “responsible path toward citizenship” for immigrants, without specifying whether she meant legal or illegal.
She added that we should “let in the asylum seekers,” and described her recent visit to asylum seekers in Mexico at Christmastime. “We have seen those kids in cages,” she said. She added that migrants from Central America were living in terrible conditions at the border with Mexico, under tarps, in the mud, with no shoes and with urgent health challenges.
“These families are escaping from the gangs, and violence — this is not who we are as Americans,” Dr. Biden said.
She added that local communities in Iowa were welcoming immigrants, and added that immigrants could help repopulate communities where “people are leaving … for one reason or another” with the help of companies that can provide jobs.
The choice, she said, was between being “angry and full of hatred” on the one hand, and welcoming immigrants on the other.
“Aren’t we all the product of immigrants — all of us?” she asked.
The Iowa caucuses will be held Feb. 3.