Bush: GOP Is, 'to a Certain Extent, Nativist'

Henrietta Strickland
April 21, 2021

George W Bush has called the Republican party under Donald Trump "isolationist, protectionist and ... nativist" - a judgment unlikely to make the former USA president new friends on the American right.

Bush, asked to describe the state of the party, replied, "I would describe it as isolationist, protectionist and, to a certain extent, nativist".

"It's not exactly my vision as an old guy, but I'm just an old guy that's put out to pasture". "Just a simple painter".

Bush, who was in NY to preside over a naturalization ceremony, said his new book, "Out of Many, One: Portraits of America's Immigrants", aims to "elevate the discourse".

"I would describe it as isolationist, protectionist, and to a certain extent, nativist", Bush told Kotb. While Bush told Kotb that the Democrats weren't listening to him on immigration when he was president, these days Republicans "aren't listening because of the politics".

The Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency was created in 2003 and the Bush administration removed 819,964 illegal immigrants from the country during the last six years of his presidency.

Mr Bush has put forward a number of suggestions for how the system can be reformed, including the creation of a more efficient temporary foreign worker entry programme, a "rigorous, fair process for undocumented immigrants" and further investment in physical border security.

Kotb followed up by asking if the former president is "disappointed" by the direction the party has taken in the years since he left office.

"I think if the emphasis is integrity and decency and trying to work to get problems solved, I think the person has a shot", he stated. Biden was kept out of the conversation as they discussed the border, only hinting at Biden's role when Bush referenced his series of executive orders overturning Trump's immigration policies. "Not really. I mean, look, I'm out".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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