Presidential candidate Scott Walker said on Sunday that building a wall on the border between the U.S. and Canada was a “legitimate issue.” During an interview with NBC’s “Meet the Press”, Walker said some citizens of New Hampshire had brought up the idea with him, and he believes it has merit.
“Some people have asked us about that in New Hampshire,” Walker said. “They raised some very legitimate concerns, including some law enforcement folks that brought that up to me at one of our town hall meetings about a week and a half ago. So that is a legitimate issue for us to look at” via CNN.
Walker believes that securing the U.S.’s borders should be a comprehensive initiative, and that terrorists could enter the U.S. from Canada.
“Whether it’s talking about the 14th Amendment or anything else, until we secure the border and enforce the laws, we shouldn’t be talking about any other issue out there,” he said.
Walker added that some voters supporting a northern border wall worry that terrorists could cross from Canada to the U.S. in the wake of a lone wolf attack on the Ottawa Parliament in October, via TIME.
GOP presidential candidates have been debating for weeks about how best to stop illegal immigration from Mexico, but this is the first time the U.S.’s northern neighbors have been mentioned. The original immigration debate was sparked by the release of Donald Trump’s controversial plan.
Although immigration has long been a key issue for Republicans as they pick their presidential nominee, Donald Trump — the bombastic businessman and television celebrity who is now the GOP front-runner — has blown up that discussion by pushing a controversial and pricey proposal under which all illegal immigrants would be deported, a massive wall would be constructed along the southern border and U.S.-born children of illegal immigrants would stop getting automatic U.S. citizenship. It has been difficult for other candidates to distinguish themselves on this issue, although several are trying, reports the Washington Post.
Although candidates had previously not been discussing the Canadian border, Jorge Ramos brought up a northern wall while being interviewed by Sean Hannity.
He asked Sean Hannity: “You’re going to do it at the border with Mexico, but how about the 5,000 miles between the U.S. and Canada?” The conservative TV host replied: “I would do it up there, too. I would do it up there, too.”
That kind of chatter — as idle as it might be — can make Canadians jittery given that more than one-third of Canada’s Gross Domestic Product involves trade with the U.S., and that a tightened border after the 9-11 attacks caused a ripple-effect that still hasn’t completely subsided, according to CBA.
Predictability, the Canadian government was not on board with the idea of building a wall. Defense Minster Jason Kenney said on Sunday said Canada “…would vigorously oppose any thickening of the border.”
[CNN] [Time] [Washington Post] [CBA] [Photo courtesy Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call]