Republican Florida Sen. Rick Scott said Sunday that President Donald Trump’s threat to place immigrants into so-called sanctuary cities might just be the President trying to “make everybody crazy.”
“I don’t know whether it’s legal or illegal. I mean, maybe he’s just saying this to make everybody crazy. Make everybody talk about it on their shows,” Scott, who represents Florida, told CNN’s Jake Tapper on “State of the Union.”
Scott added: “But what I do know is I’ve been up there – I’ve been in the Senate for 90 days, we’re not securing our border. We’re not enforcing our laws.”
On Friday, Trump said that his administration is “strongly looking at” the possibility of releasing immigrants into sanctuary cities, undercutting earlier denials from his own administration officials.
“In California, the governor wants to have a lot of people coming in, refugees coming in, a lot of sanctuary cities, so we’ll give them to the sanctuary cities maybe to take care of if it’s that the way we want it,” he said during an event at the White House.
Earlier in the day, he said on Twitter that because Democrats “are unwilling to change our very dangerous immigration laws, we are indeed, as reported, giving strong considerations to placing Illegal Immigrants in Sanctuary Cities only,” adding that “The Radical Left always seems to have an Open Borders, Open Arms policy – so this should make them very happy!”
Trump’s remarks came after the White House and Department of Homeland Security said they were no longer pursuing the suggestion to have DHS release immigrants detained at the southern border into sanctuary cities in part to retaliate against Democrats who oppose Trump’s plans for a border wall.
Scott also told Tapper that “sanctuary cities are illegal” and that Democrats cannot “pick and choose what laws you do.”
“What I don’t get is why don’t we try to solve the problem. We don’t want illegal immigration, we don’t want people coming illegally across the border, ” Scott said. “We want legal immigration. I’m from a state that we love immigrants, but we want legal immigration. So it’s frustrating to me we’re not getting anything done.”
CNN’s Priscilla Alvarez and Evan Perez contributed to this report.