Donald Trump launched his campaign by calling Mexican immigrants “rapists” and pledged to build a “a big, fat, beautiful wall” on the southern border that, of course, Mexico is going to pay for. It’s no surprise that Trump’s message struck a chord: right-wing nativism has been rising for decades and hardcore xenophobes had long since taken over the Republican Party. Worse yet, so-called immigration moderates on both sides of the aisle—including Presidents Clinton, Bush and Obama—have sought to placate those reactionary forces by militarizing the border and orchestrating mass deportations. Now that Trump has won the presidency, undocumented immigrants are rightly worried and mobilizing to defend their communities.
Today, we are joined by two guests who can help us understand where immigration politics are heading in the months to come and how we got here.
César Cuauhtémoc García Hernández is a professor at the University of Denver’s Sturm College of Law and the author of the blog “Crimmigration.”
Chris Newman, Legal Director at the National Day Labor Organizing Network.