O'Malley: U.S. shouldn't send immigrant children back to 'certain death'
July 11th, 2014
07:50 PM ET
8 years ago

O'Malley: U.S. shouldn't send immigrant children back to 'certain death'

(CNN) - Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley advocated for sympathy for the surge of young Central American immigrants flooding the U.S. southern border, arguing that to turn the children away without due process would be un-American given what violence awaits in their home countries.

"We are not a country that should turn children away and send them back to certain death," he told reporters Friday at a National Governors Association meeting in Nashville.

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A potential 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, O'Malley's comments break from those made by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at a CNN town hall event last month.

Clinton is seen as the prohibitive Democratic frontrunner in 2016, should she decide to jump in the race.

She told moderator CNN's Christiane Amanpour that the United States needs to “send a clear message, just because your child gets across the border doesn’t mean your child gets to stay.”

“They should be sent back as soon as it can be determined who responsible adults in their families are, because there are concerns whether all of them should be sent back," Clinton said. "But I think all of them who can be should be reunited with their families."

The pro-GOP opposition research shop, America Rising, pounced on O'Malley's split with Clinton on immigration, posting audio of his comments to its website and highlighting the two Democrats differing stances on the heated issue.

The Obama administration has asked Congress for nearly $4 billion in emergency funds to help speed up the processing of the child immigrants. But Republicans immediately raised concerns, especially over cost of the measure. And the fact that midterm elections are less than four months away doesn't help.

O'Malley said the children deserve due process under U.S. law.

"They should have their ability to make their case for protection and asylum in the United States," he said.

"I believe that it is contrary to everything that we stand for as a people to try to summarily send back to death, whether it's in famine; death whether it's in the middle of the ocean; death whether it's in a war torn area or death in a place where gangs are the greatest threat to stability and the rule of law and Democratic institutions in this hemisphere."

CNN's Steve Brusk contributed to this report.

Filed under: 2016 • Hillary Clinton • Immigration • Martin O'Malley • President Obama
soundoff (69 Responses)
  1. Stuffitu

    The whole poit is to turn them in to democrat liberal voters-welfare fraud division.

    July 11, 2014 08:08 pm at 8:08 pm |
  2. Tampa Tim

    If these children were fertilized eggs, the RWNJs would be on the border welcoming them.

    July 11, 2014 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  3. Chris..E.al

    Im with gurgy on this issue she will get results . Send Gurgy get it done. Listen god bless Gurgy god bless you .

    July 11, 2014 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  4. Chris..E.al

    I will tell you what ms. dem why dont you take a ride around the hood or side street and take a look at all the good you have done us ? I will tell you what put em in your front yard and when you get the poor folks happy you can make us happy cause we dont feel your b.s no mo .

    July 11, 2014 09:10 pm at 9:10 pm |
  5. ja

    The governor is correct, America can be so hypocritical, until it is sickening

    July 11, 2014 09:30 pm at 9:30 pm |
  6. bill

    he reminds me of biden--biden talks about all the help for others and his TOTAL DONATIONS FOR AN ENTIRE YEAR WAS $5,500????? that is what i'm talkin about. India will send over a million of its poor people that this idiot can pay for.

    July 11, 2014 10:05 pm at 10:05 pm |
  7. The Republican Party Is Dead To Me

    No, they're not corporations so to hell with them. If they had money, they'd be welcome with open arms.

    July 11, 2014 10:15 pm at 10:15 pm |
  8. Too Scruffy

    Certain death? How many are going to Chicago?

    July 11, 2014 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  9. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    Don't waste your time Governor. The GOP has no sympathy in their hearts. Such good Christians they are! Jesus is taking notes...

    July 11, 2014 10:49 pm at 10:49 pm |
  10. Thomas

    'certain death' ?

    Why do we support such corrupt countries , and why won't there own people fight for an end to the insanity ?

    If you want stability , quality of life , justice and freedom . You have to make a stand , fleeing is only temporary .

    'certain death' is not hunting down the corrupt politicians , cartels , Drug and human traffickers and terminating there time on the planet .

    July 11, 2014 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  11. Anonymous

    Now we know where to send them Maryland.

    July 11, 2014 11:00 pm at 11:00 pm |
  12. rs

    Not sending children back into the failed states of central America would the humane and Christian thing to do. Sort of just what Bush and the somewhat saner Congress of '08 actually meant to do.

    See the problem GOP? Your faux piousness on children, life and freedom just blew up in your faces. Your behavior reveals you for the narrow pikers you really are- and all your talk about "respecting life" is just hypocritical blather.

    July 12, 2014 12:11 am at 12:11 am |
  13. Karens Hunka

    Send them ALL to Maryland. Let their school systems collapse. Let their hospitals go bankrupt. Let their crome rate go up. let their car insurance rates skyrocket. Let their tax money evaporate to support ILLEGAL immigrants. It they "migrate" to any other state, send them straight back to Maryland.

    July 12, 2014 12:46 am at 12:46 am |
  14. Monomachos

    Holy hyperbole, governor! Really? Why hasn't the media reported all of these child murders that you think are driving these kids to the US? And, if being killed is the number one worry, for heaven's sake, don't send them to Chicago!

    July 12, 2014 01:08 am at 1:08 am |
  15. nezar

    I dont see any difference in stances. Both calls for due process.

    July 12, 2014 02:16 am at 2:16 am |
  16. rick

    Then tell Omalley.. To stick them up in HIS HOUSE and yard!! Its just another ploy from illegals to get across the border. Send the kids.. The rest follow.. Agrivating the problem even more. If they actualy farmed for FOOD instead of growing DRUGS. Things would actualy be a lot better from their OWN COUNTRY. And Mexico is obviously helping them. Otherwise.. How would they get the 2000 or more MILES through that country to get to the border? And thats another problem not mentioned.. The money made by illegals. Ends up SENT back to the country they came from!! Put a law PREVENTING western union from transfering money south of border.. Or others that do it. THATS HOW the thousands of dollars it costs to pay off the 'coyoties' gets paid to them!!! Duh.. Do you need a connect the dots picture?? Other countries guard their borders.. Why cant we? Stop the money flow south. It will stop the problem super fast.. No money... No goey anywhere.. Want to eat? Grow it.. Farm it.. Eat it.. Or is this out of comprehension?

    July 12, 2014 02:20 am at 2:20 am |
  17. @RI_Roger

    This is not practical. Americans can't afford to take care of our own children let alone the children of the world. When are we going to quit worrying about everyone else and begin to take care of ourselves first. Once we are a safe and comfortable society, we can think about what happens outside our borders. Until then, let's stop the madness of trying to be the worlds savior.

    July 12, 2014 06:31 am at 6:31 am |
  18. Gurgyl

    -there are bigger problems than this trivial. Tomorrow there is a BRICS meeting in Brezel to oppose USA trades. Yes, USA needs strict immigration system–this can be dealt internally. But watch out India and all these Muslim nations.

    July 12, 2014 07:53 am at 7:53 am |
  19. Phyllis G Williams

    Re Border Crisis, I believe God allows human plagues on Christians who say they love their country, have billions,
    and say they are in debt when "Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and Naked shall I return" (Job 1: 21)
    "What shall it profit a Man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul??" (Mark 8: 36)

    July 12, 2014 08:05 am at 8:05 am |
  20. Dems in PA

    This is an all-out INVASION and Gov. Martin O'Malley is giving aid and comfort to the enemy. His should be removed from office.

    July 12, 2014 08:06 am at 8:06 am |
  21. jpmichigan

    t also stop sending foreign aid money to these corrupt countries that really don't do a thing to stop the abuse and force parents to send their children elsewhere to protect them.

    July 12, 2014 08:30 am at 8:30 am |
  22. susanfordkeller

    Governor O'Malley needs to open wide the door to the Governor's mansion in Annapolis to accommodate this wave of illegal immigrants. Federal funds earmarked for them will most likely be used for due process hearings as the ACLU is threatening on their behalf. Martin can pay to feed, house, and educate them. Let him enjoy what his political glibness is threatening to bring about in Maryland and throughout the USA. Is he speaking as the Governor or is he speaking as a Catholic on this issue? The Catholic Church has long been aligning their future on the increase population of Hispanics coming to the US. Hmmm.....

    July 12, 2014 08:40 am at 8:40 am |
  23. susanfordkeller

    Federal funds earmarked for this wave of illegal immigrants will likely be used up in due process hearings, rather than feeding, housing or educating them. Please open up the Governor's mansion in Annapolis to accommodate them, Governor. Your political glibness on this issue is about to wreak havoc on Maryland and on America. One question, is your religious preference influencing you on this? It's long been known the Catholic bishops are pinning their hopes for the Church's future on bringing in more Hispanics to the fold here in the US.

    July 12, 2014 08:45 am at 8:45 am |
  24. yolanda

    HIs solution is an easy one.....raise taxes to pay for all of the new "immigrants". That's been his modus operandi as governor of Maryland.

    July 12, 2014 08:54 am at 8:54 am |
  25. otlset

    Control the border now! The people cry out for this, but Obama does NOTHING! STOP THE ILLEGAL INVASION!!! Put a stop to this crap!

    July 12, 2014 09:09 am at 9:09 am |
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