— The White House on Monday rejected comments by a Republican senator
that border security was being held “hostage” to a political drive to
achieve overall immigration reform.
At a briefing, White House spokesman
“The problem is,” Kyl told the town hall-style meeting in
according to video recording of the session, “if we secure the border,
then you all won’t have any reason to support comprehensive immigration
reform. In other words, they’re holding it hostage. They don’t want to
secure the border unless and until it is combined with comprehensive
Burton on Monday said the senator’s comments at the Tea Party event were “untrue.”
“No, the president didn’t say that,” Burton said, using language similar to that used earlier by
Questioned about whether the White House believed
Kyl was deliberately lying about what happened in his conversation with
Obama, Burton insisted that Kyl’s comments were untrue. Burton said
there was no transcript of the president’s one-on-one meeting with Kyl
in the Oval Office.
A spokesman for Kyl was not immediately available
for comment. But Kyl’s office earlier stood by the senator’s account,
with spokesman Ryan Patmintra telling Fox News: “There were two people
in that meeting, and
At the heart of the dispute is the fate of immigration reform in this congressional session and
Obama has criticized the law, and Secretary of State
television that the U.S. government planned to sue to overturn the act.
On Monday, Burton insisted no decision has been made and that the
question of a federal suit remained under review.
Brewer met with the president this month to discuss
the law, but there was little movement in both said was a cordial
meeting. Obama has pledged to send up to 1,200 National Guard troops to
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