Brian Kilmeade gets everything wrong about undocumented immigrants

Kilmeade falsely suggests only criminals are being deported, and wrongly claims undocumented immigrants don’t pay taxes

In an error-filled interview with Republican California gubernatorial candidate John Cox, Fox & Friends host Brian Kilmeade falsely claimed that undocumented immigrants in California are reaping benefits provided by the state without paying taxes and suggested that undocumented immigrants are reported to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) only if they are “MS-13 or a criminal.”

In fact, many undocumented immigrants do pay income taxes, contributing billions to programs including Social Security and Medicare, which they are not eligible to receive. They also contribute billions more in sales, excise, and property taxes, according to the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP).

Kilmeade also claimed that local police will “report an MS-13 or a criminal in their midst, a drug dealer here illegally” but “don't have the manpower to throw out anybody who is here illegally or who was brought here as a 3- or 4-year-old,” ignoring the cases of children and law-abiding immigrants who have been detained or deported.

From the November 21 edition of Fox News’ Fox & Friends:

BRIAN KILMEADE (CO-HOST): This just in, a federal judge permanently blocking President Trump's executive order to ban funding for sanctuary cities that don't cooperate with immigration officials calling it, quote, “unconstitutional.” Now, many of these sanctuary cities are in California, where our next guest wants to be the next governor, and is he running on the Republican ticket. He vows to undo the liberal policies destroying the state. Right now the taxes are through the roof. John Cox joins us. John, what's your reaction to this judge's ruling?

JOHN COX: Well this judge is a politician. He's a bundler for Obama. He's made contributions before he was on the bench. He actually worked in the Justice Department handling immigration. And he said in his hearings that he wasn't going to rule on decisions that he worked on while at the Department of Justice. The problem with this, Brian, is that it's all about politics. It's all about scaring people. It's all about arousing anger from some people and fear in others. And it's demagoguery, and it's got to stop. I'm a businessman looking to turn California around. And in the business world, you've got to search for solutions. And the solution here would be to make sure that people understand that the police are there to help them and secure their environment and make sure that they can put criminals in jail. I mean, this sends just the absolute wrong message about going after criminals.

KILMEADE: Right. This is protecting the people that are here. This is -- you have a choice. You have a certain amount of tax dollars going to your community. Do you want to give it to people who actually pay taxes or do you want to give it to illegals here, some of which are criminals in their midst. It's a sanctuary. John, true or false: A sanctuary city often functions as a magnet for illegals?

COX: Well because the message that's being sent by politicians like the one I'm running against, Gavin Newsom, who said, "Oh, we have to have sanctuary cities because nurses and teachers would turn their students into ICE.” There are no teachers and nurses in California turning their students over to ICE. I mean, it's all about scaring people, and he's a demagogue, and that's the problem with this.

KILMEADE: This is what you do if you are here illegally. Walk up to an officer and say if somebody is here not breaking the law illegally, and you see them, will you toss them out? The answer's no. They will still go in and report an MS-13 or a criminal in their midst, a drug dealer here illegally. They are not -- they just don't have the manpower to throw out anybody who is here illegally or who was brought here as a 3- or 4-year-old.