WASHINGTON (CNN) - He's not a presidential candidate, at least not yet, but New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is weighing in on comments from former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney that New York is a "sanctuary city" for illegal immigrants.
"I can't think of any laboratory that shows better why you need a stream of immigrants than New York City," he said Monday. "I don't know what to tell anybody. They just - if they don't believe that immigrants add a heck of a lot more than they cost, they just aren't looking at the numbers.”
Romney has repeatedly criticized GOP frontrunner Rudy Giuliani saying the former mayor supported illegal immigration in New York City during his term in office. During his comments, Bloomberg did not mention either candidate by name.
While New York City has never declared itself a sanctuary city, it does protect citizens' confidentiality when they seek medical care or report a crime, according to The Associated Press. Giuliani supported that policy when he was mayor.
Following a tour of the border in San Ysidro, California on Monday, Romney said, "We welcome legal immigration. Legal immigration is great for this country. It brings culture and vitality, skill and innovation, which is helpful to this country and always has been."
"We are a country largely of immigrants and it’s a wonderful thing," he added. “But we want to make sure it's legal immigration. We have to end illegal immigration; we have to protect legal immigration. "