- - Tuesday, November 27, 2018

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

For today’s exercise, we’ll let CNN’s Jim Acosta represent the entire liberal mainstream media (he wants to be a star, rub elbows with the glitterati, so today, the not-at-all humble journalist will be the be-all and end-all).

In the infamous press conference with President Trump earlier this month (Remember? When Mr. Acosta stood up to make some declarations [there was hardly a “question” in sight] and then brusquely swiped away a White House intern’s hand when she went to take back the microphone?), Mr. Acosta said the president was all wrong about the migrant caravan that was then marching toward the U.S.-Mexican border.

In the Nov. 7 showdown, Mr. Trump called on Mr. Acosta, who stood and said: “I wanted to challenge you on one of the statements that you made in the tail end of the campaign in the midterms, that this …” The president cut him off, knowing right away where this was headed, and said, “Oh, here we go.”

Mr. Acosta picked up the question. “… that this caravan was an ‘invasion.’”

“As you know, Mr. President, the caravan was not an invasion,” Mr. Acosta said, lecturing the president. “It’s a group of migrants moving up from Central America towards the border with the U.S.,” he said smugly.

Having been properly schooled by the CNN reporter, Mr. Trump said: “Thank you for telling me that. I appreciate it.”

Mr. Acosta went on to spout nothing but opinion, using loaded words as he unloaded his bias.

“Do you think that you demonized immigrants in this election?” Mr. Acosta asked. “Not at all,” Mr. Trump said.

“But your campaign had an ad showing migrants climbing over walls and so on,” Mr. Acosta said. “They’re not going to be doing that … They’re hundreds of miles away … That’s not an invasion.”

Flash ahead less than three weeks and whamo! — an actual invasion as so-called “migrants” clashed with U.S. Border Patrol guards at the San Ysidro port, throwing rocks and, yes, trying to climb over fences and walls “and so on.”

Yes, as the president predicted (and feared), thousands of migrants from the caravan gathered in the city of Tijuana, Mexico, and then stormed the border, overwhelming border guards, who were forced to fire tear gas to disperse the violent mob.

In an odd twist, the outcome was not what Mr. Trump or Republicans wanted — but was exactly what liberals and Democrats (and Mr. Acosta) dreamed of.

Newly elected Democratic Socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez compared the migrants at the U.S. border to Jews fleeing Nazi Germany. Sen. Brian Schatz, Hawaii Democrat, pondered on Twitter whether the use of tear gas perhaps violates the Chemical Weapons Conventions (duh, it doesn’t). And Rep. Barbara Lee, California Democrat, called on United Nations inspectors to investigating the gassing of “women and children” (it was mostly young men charging the border, if you want to stick with the facts).

But wait, there’s more hilarity. As the left savaged the president and his administration for firing tear gas at violent rock-throwing men, reporters with even a skosh of institutional memory recalled when President Obama did exactly the same thing to stem border “invasions.”

“A group of about 100 people trying to illegally cross the border Sunday near the San Ysidro port of entry threw rocks and bottles at U.S. Border Patrol agents, who responded by using pepper spray and other means to force the crowd back into Mexico, federal officials said,” The San Diego Tribune reported — on Nov. 25, 2013.

Worse still (for liberals, anyway) is the fact that few of the thousands of men who have amassed on the border are applying for asylum, as Democrats (and Mr. Acosta) contended they were planning to do when they finally reached America.

“What I saw on the border yesterday was not people walking up to Border Patrol agents and asking to claim asylum,” San Diego Sector Border Control chief patrol agent Rodney Scott said on CNN. “Matter of fact, one of the groups I watched, one of the groups that several of them were arrested, they passed 10 or 15 marked Border Patrol units … numerous uniformed personnel, as they were chanting, waving a Honduran flag, and throwing rocks at the agents.

“If they were truly asylum seekers, they would have just walked up with their hands up and surrendered. And that did not take place,” he said.

So liberals (and Jim Acosta) were completely wrong. “This caravan is not an invasion” really turned out to be fake news.

And you gotta know that Mr. Trump knew as much when he clashed with Mr. Acosta. Sure, the guy is crazy, but sometimes he’s crazy like a fox.

Joseph Curl covered the White House and politics for a decade for The Washington Times. He can be reached at [email protected] and on Twitter @josephcurl.


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