Senator John Fetterman (D-PA) broke away from fellow Democrats and defended reasonable discussions to secure the country’s southern border.
The Pennsylvania Democrat blamed members of his own party for failing to reach terms on a border security deal.
“I hope Democrats can understand that it isn’t xenophobic to be concerned about the border,” Fetterman said in an interview.
“It’s a reasonable conversation, and Democrats should engage,” he added.
Somehow, Fetterman sounds like the most logical Democrat in Washington D.C.
I have no idea how we got here, but Fetterman has somehow become the most sane national Democrat in the country almost overnight. https://t.co/IKL8ZZxvdQ
— AG (@AGHamilton29) December 8, 2023
Fetterman, a progressive favorite, urged Democrats to acknowledge the large numbers of migrants streaming across the southern border. He cited the nearly 270,000 border encounters that U.S. Customs and Border Protection reported in September.
“Honestly, it’s astonishing. And this isn’t a Fox News kind of statistic. This is the government’s,” he said. “You essentially have Pittsburgh showing up there at the border.”
His remarks come as Democrats increasingly stiff-arm the border talks for skewing too far toward GOP demands — and they’re even more striking given his status as a longtime vocal advocate for immigrants. His wife, Gisele Fetterman, was a so-called “Dreamer” who came to the U.S. from Brazil when she was seven years old, a story he highlighted in a video during his 2022 Senate primary. (She became a citizen in 2009.)
The senator’s comments also demonstrate the degree to which he has positioned himself as a staunch ally to Israel during its war in Gaza, an outlook that has deeply frustrated his progressive allies. Fetterman, whose office is adorned with the Israeli flag and a “We Stand With Ukraine” poster, said he is “appalled” that Congress is considering “f****** over” the two countries.
This isn’t the first time Fetterman has suddenly spoken with common sense on critical issues facing the country.
In September, Fetterman said the United States should take back Chinese-owned agricultural land.
“I hope many of our colleagues agree, the Chinese government and other U.S. adversaries should own zero, zero agricultural land in our country, I believe that,” Fetterman said at a Senate Agriculture Committee hearing.
FETTERMAN: "The Chinese government…should own ZERO agricultural land in our country…They're taking back our pandas! We should take back all of their farmland!" pic.twitter.com/OnF6JSNF7a
— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) September 27, 2023
Also, Fetterman’s border comments aren’t his first detraction from congressional Democrats.
Fetterman called for Democrat Senator Bob Menendez to be expelled after the House of Representatives expelled Rep. George Santos (R-NY).
Fetterman: "We have a colleague in the Senate that's actually done much more sinister kinds of things. He needs to go. If you are going to expel Santos, how can you allow Menendez to remain in the Senate? Menendez is really a Senator for Egypt, not New Jersey." pic.twitter.com/OdWTznfnmL
— TheBlaze (@theblaze) December 1, 2023
ABC 27 News reports:
Moments after nearly all Democrats and many Republicans voted to expel Rep. George Santos (R-New York) from Congress, Sen. John Fetterman (D-Pennsylvania) became among the first prominent Democrats to publicly call for the expulsion of Sen. Bob Menendez (D-New Jersey), who has pleaded not guilty to bribery and conspiracy charges.
“He has to go,” Fetterman, speaking Friday morning on ABC’s “The View,” said of Menendez. “If you are going to expel Santos, how can you allow somebody like Menendez to remain in the Senate?”
Fetterman called Menendez’s alleged actions “much more sinister and serious” than Santos’s.
Fetterman went on to call Menendez “a senator for Egypt, not New Jersey.”
Fetterman is one of more than 30 Senate Democrats who have called for Menendez to resign. He was also the first Senate Democrat to call for Menendez to step down, after the New Jersey Senator and his wife were indicted in September.
In late September, the Congressman told reporters he would support a resolution to expel Menendez from the Senate.