Jon Kyl, the Senate’s second ranking Republican and Senator from the border state of Arizona, said Friday back in the state that Obama told him that the White House was intentionally not stopping the flow of illegal immigrants because doing so would sap GOP support for comprehensive immigration reform.
According to Kyl, during a private meeting in the Oval, Obama said the following:
The problem is, if we secure the border, then you all won’t have any reason to support comprehensive immigration reform.
“In other words,” Kyl added, “they’re holding it hostage.”
At this afternoon’s briefing, White House Deputy Press Secretary Bill Burton said Kyl’s statement was not true, and he didn’t steer reporters away from the notion that Kyl was lying instead of mistaken.
Burton: The president didn’t say that. Senator Kyl knows that the president didn’t say that . . . that statement’s not true.
Reporter: Did Kyl lie? Or is this within the range of acceptable political exaggeration?
Burton: I’ll let other folks make that determination.
Listen to Kyl’s statement to see if you think the senator accidentally bumbled into this.It starts at about 3:20 on the video I’ve linked to.
There’s nothing unclear here. Either the president is lying, or Sen. Kyl is.