June 21st, 2010
04:27 PM ET
4 years ago

Obama and Kyl: He said, he said

Sen. Jon Kyl and President Obama differ on what was said in their one-on-one Oval Office meeting.
Sen. Jon Kyl and President Obama differ on what was said in their one-on-one Oval Office meeting.

Washington (CNN) –There's no White House transcript or tape to veryify what was said in a private Oval Office meeting with President Obama, but White House Deputy Spokesman Bill Burton calls Republican Senator Jon Kyl's version of a one-on-one discussion on immigration reform, "not true."

Last Friday, at a Tea Party town hall in Arizona, the Republican Senate Whip said the President told him, "if we secure the border, then you all won't have any reason to support comprehensive immigration reform." Senator Kyl was suggesting that border security was being held hostage for political reasons.

The White House fired back on its blog, on Twitter and in the daily briefing. "The president didn't say that," Burton insisted, adding, "what everybody knows, because the president has made it perfectly clear, is that what we need to do is everything that we can to bring about comprehensive immigration reform. And that includes not just securing the border, but doing a lot of different other things."

So what was said?

When asked if the White House would provide its version of the conversation, Burton responded "no."

But top aides claim President Obama's actions are proof of a comprehensive strategy. Burton ticked off steps the administration has already taken…"we've put more resources at the border than have ever been there before. The president has doubled the number of border agents who are there. We've put other surveillance systems in. "


Filed under: Immigration • Jon Kyl • President Obama
soundoff (85 Responses)
  1. Ancient Texan

    The last thing this administration wants is the border controlled. The more illegals able to get in before we actually start enforcing the federal laws on protecting America's borders, the better Obama and Co. will feel about maintaining control of the presidency and legislature for the next 20 years. The lawbreakers will be allowed to vote, as long as it is for democrats because amnesty will be the next bill presented after cap and tax.

    June 21, 2010 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  2. ThinkAgain

    You don't want illegal aliens coming to our country?

    STOP HIRING THEM!

    June 21, 2010 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  3. Rack

    Immigration is tough issue and not one that will most likely be fixed by a weak & inexperienced President. Only Clinton or Reagan had the skills & political capital to handle immgration reform.

    June 21, 2010 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  4. andy

    The Obama admin telling a lie...there is a surprise. Obama will do anything to secure the hispanic vote. I wouldn't be surprised is he tried to give give voting rights to illegals. He dosen't seem to be worried about anything else but politics.

    June 21, 2010 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  5. 8 years of the Bush Error = How many years of recession and unemployment?

    You might want to tone down the criticism of the President taking Father's Day off to play golf.

    Folks, might recall that Bush was on vacation the entire month of August 2001 and was too busy vacationing to pay attention to the daily brief on his desk that was entitled "Bin Laden plans attack on America".

    That vacation cost 3000 Americans their lives, pretty sure bet a round of golf did not cause anyone to die.

    June 21, 2010 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  6. jeff

    If he didn't say it, why doesn't he protect the border and enforce the law? the one Congress enacted stating the same thing the Arizona law state.

    June 21, 2010 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  7. BeverlyNC

    I would believe President Obama over a slimebal Republican like Kyl. Kyl has lied so many times on so many topics and is one of those who is out to bring Obama down – SO – Kyl is the liar. What Republican isn't one??

    June 21, 2010 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  8. Jace

    The border is NOT sealed because Obama and his cronies don't want it sealed. They don't care if Americans are terrorized on the border or if the drug lords rule in Arizona. If the illegals were likely to vote Republican, the border would be sealed tomorrow. I believe Kyl.
    Obama has already lied to Jan Brewer – where are the 1,200 national guard troops that he promised.

    June 21, 2010 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  9. Blah blah

    And we should believe Obama's spokesman because...?

    It's obvious that Obama isn't going to secure the border. In fact, he and his staff are against anything that limits illegal immigration. The prime example is, without anyone even reading the 10 page AZ law, Obama and his staff all came out against it.

    June 21, 2010 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  10. Biased

    On past record – I believe Kyl over Obama any day. Obama wouldn't meet with Brewer until the publicity got too bad, neither will Napolitano. He promised they would get back to her within two weeks – didn't do it. Napolitano canceled further building of the fence, they ridicule the Arizona Law (both Obama and Holder) after admitting they hadn't read it, now going to sure over the laws they won't enforce themselves........ sorry – Kyl wins in my mind.

    June 21, 2010 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  11. Sherrielle Monroe

    The Republican is trying so hard to lie to the public. We are not buying this BIG FAT LIE. Joh Kyle is TELLING A BIG FAT LIE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!. We need Comprehensive Immaigrateion Reform Bill Now. Bring it to the floor an let see who is lying. The REPUBLICAN are now running in their BOOTS because they know that the Attorneys General Holder is going to SUE THE GOVERNOR OF ARIZONA. This is what this lie is all about. Wake up people don't you dare fall for this.

    June 21, 2010 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  12. patrick

    Okay, maybe i am missing something; but it seems repubs are expecting Obama to do in 1 1/2 years what bush and the repubs could not do in 8. The guy hasn't even pulled his other foot through the white house door and they are expexting al this from him.

    June 21, 2010 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  13. rachel

    Well we know Obama has lied before. He lied when he campaigned AGAINST the mandate basically laughed at Hillary for it now he thinks it's ok and he has defintely lied about not beign the typical politican he embodies the typical politican. I don't know if Kyl is telling the truth either.

    June 21, 2010 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  14. Ellie

    My MONEY is on President Obama. You'd have to be DEAF, DUMB and BLIND not see Kyl the LIAR!!!

    June 21, 2010 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  15. phoenix86

    Let's see, the president agrees to exempt Nebraska from Obamacare; buys off Louisiana to get another vote for Obamacare; offers a job to two individuals if the don't run in an election.

    Yea, I think Jon Kyl heard the President exactly right.

    June 21, 2010 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  16. David

    Of course the president didn't say this, wishful thinking perhaps on the GOP or more likely just another political game. It is not like the need for immigration reform is new, the GOP did absolutely nothing on this for 8 years and is still playing political games to ensure that this is stalled.

    All the GOP seems to spew is absolute crap, heresay and complaining about someone having a round of golf, get freaking real, do you expect him to work 24/7, Bush certainly didn't at a time of two wars, during the worst terrorist attack in the US or during of Katrina, etc...

    June 21, 2010 06:36 pm at 6:36 pm |
  17. Underdog

    Although I am highly skeptical of "let GM die" Kyl, it would be interesting to see why the White House said "no" when asked for it's version of the conversation. And it is plausible that the big O want's immigration reform (legalize millions of illegals), healthcare reform (more government workers), and probably, statehood for Puerto Rico because he wants more Democrat voters. Part of the "grand scheme." That said, Kyl's character came into question when he vocally opposed the government's help of GM and then came out against the automaker's plan to eliminate dealers. His agenda was the unions (more voters) and nothing else. Now that I think of it, I don't like any of them. All politics, very little of what's good for America.

    June 21, 2010 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  18. Dave

    Kyl and the rest of the brainiacs in the GOP wouldn't know the truth if it bit them on their arses. Remember, these are the same people that have made lying an art form...

    June 21, 2010 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  19. Da Professor

    IMMIGRATION - Just one more problem that Bushy – Dicky and friends did NOT correct and had NO answers – solutions for.

    Then this same sorry bunch took the Regulation controls off of Wall Street and the Big Banks and nearly drove us into a Depression.

    Oh yeah, lets all vote them back into control.

    June 21, 2010 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  20. TOTUS 4 PRESIDENT

    Oh, I simply CANNOT believe the choir boys in the White House like that nice Mr. Obama and sweet little Rahm Emmanuel would EVER play dirty politics and use a catastrophe like the Administration's neglect of the border, thus creating a safety and security nightmare, as leverage to advance their agenda of granting amnesty to all illegals...

    No, we cannot accept that Obama and Emmanuel would stoop to party politcal thuggery at the expense of America's best interests. Wait, yes we can!

    June 21, 2010 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  21. Republicans is smart in the head area

    Right, I'm sure John Kyl wouldn't lie like he usually does.

    June 21, 2010 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  22. Riley

    I tend to believe Senator Kyl on this one. Obama has been making mistake after mistake lately. I'm afraid Obama will be a one termer!

    June 21, 2010 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  23. Crazy Harry

    Embarrassed to say I live in Arizona.

    June 21, 2010 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  24. Carol Johns

    This sounds about right since Obama is suing AZ because they are trying to fix the problem. Everything Obama does is for political power, not for the betterment of the people.

    June 21, 2010 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  25. Roscoe

    I'm from AZ too and Kyl and truth aren't close friends. Between the "new" McCain, Hayworth, and Kyl, AZ's prospects at Senator are pretty bleak.

    June 21, 2010 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
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