Sept. 14, 2019
Jason Hopkins

Former Attorney General Eric Holder defended his old boss and expressed caution when discussing Democratic presidential candidates’ growing embrace of more lax immigration laws.

Holder defended the Obama administration’s deportation record on CNN’s “The Axe Files” program and warned Democrats against border decriminalization, a proposal that is becoming mainstream among 2020 Democrats.

“Democrats have to understand that we do have to have — borders mean something,” he said in the interview, which aired Saturday.

“There is some angst among the left about the fact that there were hundreds of thousands of deportations a year. The [Obama] administration was pretty robust in that area,” host David Axelrod said during the interview.

Holder, who served as former President Barack Obama’s attorney general, noted that of those who were deported during his administration, there was an “emphasis” placed on those with criminal records and those who posed a public safety risk.

Numerous presidential hopefuls within the Democratic Party have come out in support of border decriminalization. More specifically, they would like to amend Section 1325 of the Immigration and Nationality Act, the section of the U.S. legal code that makes unauthorized entry into the county a misdemeanor.

There are those who would like to take this proposal even further, such as former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro, who wants to decriminalize illegal reentry, a felony offense that could land an individual in prison for a minimum of two years.

Holder said Saturday he doesn’t agree with such a stance.