On Tuesday, liberal political analyst Jeffrey Toobin admitted that "asylum is different from economic migrants" in a comment about the ever-growing number of foreigners seeking admission to the U.S. from Tijuana, Mexico. Toobin, a former lawyer with the Department of Justice and senior legal analyst at CNN, said that persons seeking asylum remain “different from economic immigrants.” Saying that immigrants “are not allowed to come to this country just because you want a better life,” Toobin said that asylum is reserved to people who legitimately fear persecution in their home countries.
"It is worth remembering that asylum is different from economic migrants," Toobin said on CNN's "New Day." "You are not allowed to come to this country just because you want a better life. That may be a good thing or a bad thing, but asylum is for people who have a well-founded fear of persecution." His comments came on the day after a federal judge’s ruling blocked the Trump administration from denying asylum to migrants who enter the U.S. illegally.
”...what the judge just told them [caravan migrants] is just go ahead and cross the border illegally instead of going through a port of entry which is the legal process...the judge just encouraged them to break our laws and cross the border illegally.” —Brandon Judd Pres. NBPC pic.twitter.com/1BWeoCgABN— MAGA🇺🇸PATRIOT🇺🇸Steve (@RealMAGASteve) November 20, 2018
In a joint statement on November 8, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker claimed that the asylum system has been overwhelmed. “Our asylum system is overwhelmed with too many meritless asylum claims from aliens who place a tremendous burden on our resources, preventing us from being able to expeditiously grant asylum to those who truly deserve it,” read the statement.
Toobin disagreed on Tuesday, saying, “The numbers are not that different from what they have been. The numbers of people who are being admitted into this country are not that different. So, I don’t think the system is necessarily overwhelmed."