(CNN) – New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie blamed the Obama administration for the influx of immigrant children at the southern border, but didn't rule out the prospect of accepting children in New Jersey on a case-by-case basis.
"I have great empathy for that situation, but frankly the administration has done an awful job in securing our border, and they need to do that," Christie told reporters in Marion, Iowa, where he campaigned for incumbent Gov. Terry Branstad.
"I don't think ... it matters one bit what your Hispanic population is, as to whether or not you're going to offer help and assistance," he continued. "So we'll take every request that comes based on its merits and make those decisions."
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He stressed that he doesn't want to "participate in encouraging this," but added "we are an empathetic people in this country and we don't like seeing people suffer."
Christie's comments represent a departure from some governors, who have turned down requests from officials to house immigrants during the crisis.
Thousands of children from Central America, many unaccompanied, have streamed across the U.S. border with Mexico this year in what the administration calls an unexpected surge.
All sides agree that it’s become a humanitarian crisis with the federal government struggling to manage the influx.
President Barack Obama’s $3.7 billion emergency funding proposal to address the situation has been received coolly in Congress.
Christie, a potential White House contender, further fueled speculation about his 2016 ambitions with is visit to Iowa. There, he blasted the federal government for refusing to deal with immigration reform "in any meaningful way."
2016 hovers over Christie Iowa trip
While in the Hawkeye State, which holds the first nominating contest in presidential election years, Christie brushed off new poll numbers that indicate about a third of Iowans hold a negative opinion of him.
Christie comes under attack as he heads to Iowa
In March, Christie argued that "they love me in Iowa," saying his direct personality can translate to cultures outside of New Jersey. Asked Thursday if he thinks Iowans still like him, Christie said, “They do.”
“And every time I come here to Iowa I get a great sense of affection and respect from folks here. But, that doesn't mean that you're going to be universally loved,” he said. “And if you want to be universally loved in this business then you're the absolute poster boy for being ineffective.”
Sure, NJ has good gang connections. They could teach them the ropes of America.
Chris Christie, the Obese One, could actually feed all those immigrants himself by just donating his lunch.
That would be his Biggest contribution ever. Hard to think of anything else that crook has done.
Send the rug rats to Washington D. C.!
Christie followed up by saying; "… which lever do I pull to increase taxes for this?"
They can all live under the bridge. Along with the troll they have as governor.
This happened once, years ago, in history. A flood of illegals came pouring into this country. They stole land, forced the natives to change their religion, killed natives, and forced everyone to learn English. Soon the whites will be forced to live on reservations and learn Spanish. Soon whites won't be able to vote, and have to use separate bathrooms. Soon what you have done to the rest of the world will be done to you. And I can't be racist for saying this because I'm white.
they should all be sent to live with obama in the whitehouse
This is tantamount to an invasion, and, thus, is allowing and encouraging al Queda into our homes. Basically Christy is supporting invasion of America.
New Jersey already has a huge illegal population Shut up, Christie.
No send them back
What part of illegal doesn't anyone understand???? Webster dictionary defines: prohibited by LAW. These kids are illegals and they bring in no only poverty for our nation. That's right...how much money do we have to take care of these kids. The parents of these kids need to have birth control. They can't afford them. They bring them into poverty just for a few moments of pleasure? Then these kids become our problem. SEND THEM BACK. We have children in West Virginia, Tenn. Kentucky, etc that are starving. The food stamp policy needs to be redone. I was in Walmart the other day and saw a family of Mexicans with a new born (which she dropped out just for free stuff) throwing stuff into two grocery carts. .... chips, drinks, processed food. Stop the insanity. Give them limited access to food. No processed food, no drinks, no chips, etc. See if they go work. Make employers stop hiring them by taking them to court and paying a huge fine. Our schools are suffering....our culture is suffering...our economy is suffering. And the madness continues with people like Glenn Beck who says God told him to help the children. That only encourages them idiot who has just purchase a 3.5 million dollar home in Dallas, TX. Hypocrites...Kristin Powers, Juan Williams, Pelosi...make these people take them in. Please take them to Washington and let them pitch tents on the capital grounds. Obama and Michele are just laughing at night at what they have done to America. They will go back to Hawaii to their estate and continue to laugh. Let's just hope a huge tidal wave washes them out to sea when the earthquake erupts.
You left out one thing on your history lesson - The Spaniards did the same thing and even worse to the Natives throughout what is U.S., Central America, Mexico and South America. So, I don't see how you can condemn just the whites and think it's righteous indignation that the Latinos are taking over America. Dumb.
Most, if not the majority of illegal immigrants pay their taxes. There is a greater percentage of "legal" citizens that are delinquent on their taxes.
Send them back to where they came from. Why should the US citizens be paying for this. Let the government from their home countries either pick up the kids or pick up the tab for housing, education, health care. The US taxpayers should not be footing the bill.
I bet at least a few of them could find work in Flip Flopney's San Diego mansion....running the car elevator, cleaning up after Queen Ann....gardening the vast grounds
New Jersey can't even afford day care services for children in New Jersey , the Governor already cut there existing budget
, This is all about Votes in the presidential election .
Viva Christie 2016
Seeing some of the comments on this issues is mind boggling. Obama did not promise these children amnesty under the "Dreamer Act". This flood of children do not meet the criteria – they had to be in the US between the dates of June 15, 2007 and June 15, 2011. Anyone after the 6/15/2011 date will not be eligible. Please take your political blinders off. Read the legislation before you comment – many of you look less intelligent then the kids you're screaming about.
Take the emotion out of it first. My emotion is let them stay, I'll take 3 and raise them myself. Logic tells my heart that they are here illegally and need to come here correctly. That same logic says that both side of the political toilet have failed to do their jobs by not passing an immigration bill that actually works.
As far as security at the boarder – It is secure, if it weren't these kids would simply be slipping in and disappearing. We wouldn't have a housing issue trying to find a place for them all. Just saying – again engage logic before posting.