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March 6, 2019

Rep. Barragán tells Nielsen she is either lying or doesn’t know what is happening at the border

Rep. Nanette Barragán, a Democrat from California, told Kirstjen Nielsen that she will hold the Homeland Security secretary accountable for what happens at the border.

Barragán said she saw asylum seekers turned away despite Nielsen’s claim that the US didn’t do that.

She also went after Nielsen on family separations, calling her comments on wanting to act with compassion “outrageous.”

Here’s a portion of their exchange:

Barragán: You testified that asylum seekers are not being turned away at the ports of entry. Was that your testimony here today?

Nielsen: They are not turned away — they are brought in — I am not sure if you are talking about the migrant protection protocol. But in that case —

Barragán: Any asylum seeker who comes to a port of entry, you basically have just said —

Nielsen: You are allowed to make your claim.

Barragán: OK. Well, let me tell you madam secretary, either you are lying to this committee, or you don’t know what’s happening at the border. I have been there firsthand, and I have seen it, twice.