On Fox & Friends, Fox News’ Jillian Mele falsely claimed that sanctuary cities across the United States are allowing undocumented people to become naturalized American citizens. According to Mele, “these twenty-one cities [are] teaming up with the Naturalize NOW campaign to rush the process for illegals pouring over our borders." The claim, which originated in the conservative Washington Examiner and was also pushed on Breitbart.com, misrepresented the campaign, which “encourages eligible legal permanent residents to seek out” citizenship. According to the Department of Homeland Security Office of Immigration Statistics, there are 8.8 million legal permanent residents in the United States who are currently eligible for naturalization. From the July 5 edition of Fox News’ Fox & Friends:
AINSLEY EARHARDT (CO-HOST): Alright, Jillian has some headlines for us. Good morning Jillian.
JILLIAN MELE: That's right. Good morning to you guys, good morning Todd, and to you at home. Let's stick with the theme right now. Sanctuary cities across the US pledging to turn one million immigrants into citizens just this year. Now these twenty-one cities teaming up with the Naturalize NOW campaign to rush the process for illegals pouring over our borders. This, of course, is in defiance of the Trump campaign, which is working to pass multiple bills cracking down on illegal immigrants.
UPDATE: The Naturalize NOW campaign issued a statement condemning Fox & Friends' mischaracterization of their goal. The response read in part: “We strongly condemn the fake news of Fox & Friends this morning, claiming that our campaign is trying to turn 'illegals' into U.S. citizens. Our campaign has worked for years to assist the 8.8 million eligible legal permanent residents - immigrants with green cards - to become U.S. citizens. To claim otherwise is a lie, and we demand a retraction from Fox News.”