During Monday’s press briefing at the White House, Donald Trump’s press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders defended a controversial ad released by the president’s campaign that accused Democrats of being “complicit in every murder committed by illegal immigrants,” saying it’s tied to “national security.”
“President Trump is right — build the wall, deport criminals, stop illegal immigration now,” the ad says, showing clips of Democratic Minority Leaders Sen. Chuck Schumer(N.Y.) and Rep. Nancy Pelosi (Calif.). “Democrats who stand in our way will be complicit in every murder committed by illegal immigrants.”
At the end of the ad, Trump says he approves the message. But Sanders argued on Monday that campaign ads “aren’t being run by the White House.”
“I can’t get into any details, but his position on the need for border security is something we have talked about and have been clear on,” she said.
The ad was released over the weekend as lawmakers on Capitol Hill sought common ground on immigration reform in an effort to pass a spending bill that would reopen the government.
While defending the ad and trying to distance President Trump from it at the same time, Sanders insisted that Trump could take credit for the end of the government shutdown.
Asked how a Trump campaign ad claiming Democrats are “complicit” in murders committed by undocumented immigrants contributed to a deal between Senate Democrats and Republicans to reopen the government, Sanders responded:
“The president’s number one focus is our national security,” Sanders opined. “He’s been very strong on discussing the need for border security and tying that directly to national security.”
Watch the video below: