'The Kelly File' Special: Battle at the Border

Reaction on 'The Kelly File' to fallout after the GOP nominee's major policy speech


This is a rush transcript from "The Kelly File," September 5, 2016. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SHANNON BREAM, FOX NEWS HOST: Breaking tonight, with a little more than 60 days to go before America elects its next president, Republican Donald Trump has again touched off a huge fight over immigration in the 2016 campaign.

Welcome to THE KELLY FILE Special: Battle at the Border. I'm Shannon Bream in for Megyn Kelly. In recent days, we've witnessed a series of headlines involving Mr. Trump and what appear to be changes in his position on how to deal with the illegal immigrants. It all culminated in a whirlwind day that saw the nominee travel to Mexico City to meet with the Mexican president. Followed by a major speech in the border state of Arizona, where Mr. Trump laid out his vision for immigration reform. Watch.


DONALD TRUMP, R, PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: Number one, are you ready? We will build a great wall along the Southern border. Number two, we are going to end catch and release. Number three, zero tolerance for criminal aliens. Zero. Number four, block funding for sanctuary cities. Number five, cancel unconstitutional executive orders and enforce all immigration laws.

Number six, we are going to suspend the issuance of visas to anyplace where adequate screening cannot occur. Number seven, we will ensure that other countries take their people back when we order them deported. Number eight, we will finally complete the biometric entry exit visa tracking system. Number nine, we will turn off the jobs and benefits magnet. Number ten, we will reform legal immigration to serve the best interests of America and its workers.


BREAM: But will his plan actually work, and what does this border battle mean for the presidential race? We have a powerful lineup including Chris Stirewalt and Guy Benson on the political fallout. America's toughest sheriff, Joe Arpaio, on what it means for enforcing our laws. Jose Antonio Vargas is an activist tracking this issue within the Hispanic community.

Plus, Mary Ann Mendoza is with us. She saw her police officer son killed by an illegal immigrant. And Howie Kurtz has an eye opening look at how the media are covering this issue.

But we begin with Trace Gallagher reporting from our West Coast Newsroom.
Hey, Trace.

TRACE GALLAGHER, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Shannon. Despite the Trump campaign recently saying that some immigration policies were, quote, "Too be determined and Trump himself saying that he was open to softening his stance on immigration, Trump's ten-point plan you just saw very much appears to alleviate any mixed messages." In fact, in point one, again, Trump reinforces what he's been saying for 14 months. Watch.


TRUMP: On day one, we will begin working on an impenetrable, physical, tall, powerful, beautiful, southern border wall.



GALLAGHER: So point by point, Trump made it clear there would be no presidential pivot. He laid out his plan to end catch and release, double down on zero tolerance for criminal aliens, and vowed to withhold federal taxes from sanctuary cities. And the more Trump reinforced his previous positions, the more some of his ardent supporters cheered. Listen.


RICH LOWRY, EDITOR, NATIONAL REVIEW: And Trump says, we're going to enforce the laws, reduce the population of illegal immigrants, and then we'll talk about the remaining illegal population down the road. That's absolutely a correct position and that's the entire Republican Party including immigration sparrows are going to rally around that position. I think it's great.


GALLAGHER: But some Latino supporters say as early as this week during a conference call, Trump told faith leaders they could expect to see a more compassionate Trump. Now they feel betrayed. The executive vice president of the National Hispanic Leadership Conference says, quote, "There's several of us who have gone out on a limb, if you will, to try to at least be at the table of reason with him, and that's left us confused and disappointed."

And the president of the Latino Partnership for conservative principles said, quoting again, "At this point, I don't see how I can support him. So, I'm withdrawing my support." And a USA Today/Suffolk poll certainly doesn't bode well for Trump going forward with minorities. It shows Donald Trump is supported by just four percent of blacks and about a quarter of Hispanics. Additionally, 80 percent of African-Americans view Donald Trump as racist. Sixty percent of Hispanics agree -- Shannon.

BREAM: Tough numbers to fight against, Trace. Thank you. So what will it mean for the general election?

Chris Stirewalt, our FOX News digital politics editor and Guy Benson, political editor and a FOX News contributor. Gentlemen, welcome to you both. Good to see you.

All right. Chris, I'll start with you. Those polling numbers are bad for anybody. I mean you're up against those poll numbers, and you got 60-some days left, that's a heavy lift.

CHRIS STIREWALT, FOX NEWS DIGITAL POLITICS EDITOR: Well, look, here's a way to look at it. Donald Trump is doing about as well with Hispanic voters as Mitt Romney and John McCain did, which is not good, but it's not that much worse. Republicans who were already in extremis when it comes to the largest growing, fastest growing demographic group in the U.S. electorate. So it's not like he's doing worse there. And so that's maybe not so bad. I'm sure he would have liked to be doing better with black voters. I'm sure that he has these concerns.

The question for Trump and the whole point about all this immigration pivot, not pivot, all this razzmatazz is, can he find a way to get more Americans, more white Americans really, to come to his side because a lot of them are put off by his point of view on immigration? When we look at what support was for his previous position, which was the deportation force
-- mass deportations, that was a non-starter. The wall is not popular with voters overall. So he has problems even within the Republican Party. At some point he has to be able to get beyond this issue and start talking to voters other than those in his base.

BREAM: Yes, and to that point, Guy, we also have FOX News polling that shows, you know, if he were to soften his issues on illegal immigration, 48 percent say that would actually make them more likely to vote for him. Fifteen percent say less likely. So, it sounds like he has his people locked in that are going to be with him and want him to be the hard core. But a chance he could pick up some other people, which he definitely needs them if he's going to pull this off.

GUY BENSON, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: And that's what's so confusing sometimes, Shannon. When you're trying to analyze Trump's rhetoric and positions, it's unclear which Trump and issue set we're necessarily talking about. Are we talking about Wednesday night's Donald Trump and the speech that he gave, which was laced with sort of red meat, hawkish rhetoric that led to a number of resignations from his Latino advisory board?

Or are we talking about Thursday morning's Donald Trump, who told Laura Ingraham there's going to be quite a bit of softening, and who has actually softened legitimately on substance insofar as he has shifted his focus from mass deportations to immigrants who have committed additional crimes, illegal immigrants, felons, for example. Right. So it's sometimes hard for us to keep track of which Trump we're talking about when it comes to the general election and the general electorate and what people are hearing. There's some discordant messaging.

BREAM: Uh-hm. And Chris, it seems like of these members who have either quit or are threatening to quit, this Hispanic Advisory Council or board that he had, it sounds like they may have been getting different messages because you remember a couple weeks ago in that meeting --


BREAM: You know, people came out of there and said, hey, there may be some path. There maybe -- they didn't want to use the amnesty word, but they said there's definitely a difference, and then when they heard that speech Wednesday night, not the same guy. I don't even recognize him from the meeting we had.

STIREWALT: It took him too long to get to -- what Guy just referenced; it took him too long to get to what has been the standard Republican policy on this question really dating back to about 2007, which is enforcement first. Now, Trump has more enforcement, and he talks about it in more lavish fashion. But enforcement first and then deal with the question of those who remain. That's been the Republican position for a long time. It shouldn't take two weeks to get to that position.

And moreover, he should stop talking about dad gum immigration. It is not the most important issue by a long shot for most Americans, and for those Americans who are hawkish on immigration, who really care about that issue at the top of the stack, they're already voting for Donald Trump. He's already got their support. He has to get off of this issue and start talking about pocketbook issues and things that suburban voters really care about, or he's not going to be able to execute a pivot into viability.

BREAM: Uh-hm. And, Guy, quickly as we're almost out of time, this was a big selling point for him and something that differentiated him or at least he tried to use it as something that differentiated him from the other 16 Republicans who were running. So the people who signed on to him because of this issue, for them, it may be the number one issue.

BENSON: Yes. Although as you pointed out in our FOX News polling, his supporters, Trump's base is the group that is most likely to forgive a so- called softening. They say a plurality that they would be more likely to vote for him with very few saying that they would waver in their support. So he's got his base locked down. The pivot that he's talked about, the softening that he's paid lip service to, that would be directed at other voters, and yet the tone at least on Wednesday night seemed like coming back for a similar play to the base that he already has from the primary.

BREAM: Uh-hm. All right. Guy, Chris, great to see you both.

BENSON: Thank you.


BREAM: The battle at the border took a dramatic turn last week when news broke that Donald Trump would make an unexpected trip to Mexico to visit that country's president. While the meeting was widely regarded as stately, presidential, even dignified, it did not change the messaging from either the Clinton or Trump campaigns.


HILLARY CLINTON, D, PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: You don't build a coalition by insulting our friends or acting like a loose cannon. You do it by putting in the slow, hard work of building relationships. And it certainly takes more than trying to make up for a year of insults and insinuations by dropping in on our neighbors for a few hours and then flying home again.
That is not how it works.

TRUMP: Hillary Clinton promises a radical amnesty combined with a radical reduction in immigration enforcement. The result will be millions more illegal immigrants, thousands of more violent, horrible crimes, and total chaos and lawlessness.


BREAM: Joining me now, David Wohl, attorney and Donald Trump supporter. And Richard Fowler, nationally syndicated radio talk show host. Great to see you, gentlemen.



BREAM: All right. Richard, he's getting credit, even from people who don't like him who said, listen, it looked presidential. He was standing there on the stage with another world leader, and he pulled it off.

FOWLER: Indeed. And here's the thing, Shannon. It did look presidential. I won't discount that. But the speech that he gave a couple hours after was the opposite of presidential. At the beginning of the segment, Trace talked about the number -- how deplorable his numbers are amongst Hispanics. Sixty percent of them find him to be racist or bigoted. Now, let's put this into context and talk about this from a presidential election per se. The last time a Republican won the White House was George W. Bush in 2004. He won 40 percent of Latinos.

Donald Trump is nowhere near that number. He's almost 20 points down to where George W. Bush was in 2004. That makes the White House almost unwinnable, all because he continues to push forward this really, really bad immigration policy. He's learned nothing from John McCain or Mitt Romney. Self-deportation doesn't work. Building a wall doesn't work. We need a clear, clean, pathway to citizenship, and he could continue what Obama is doing. Obama is called the deporter-in-chief. So deport the bad ones and find a pathway to citizenship for the good ones. Pretty simple.

BREAM: All right. David, he did put out ten points in that speech on Wednesday. I'm guessing Richard disliked at least maybe nine of them.

WOHL: Right.

BREAM: But he's right about the numbers. I mean how does Trump turn that around? How does he convince people? You know, he talked about minorities in that speech and said that they are the ones -- the ones who are here legally in the U.S., they're being hurt by illegal immigration. Is that going to be enough to convince these, you know, different groups that he needs to win over that he's our guy?

WOHL: Well, Shannon, we have to talk about choices. It's Mr. Trump versus four more years of Mr. Obama. I mean the diplomatic meeting between Mr. Trump and Mr. Pena Nieto in Mexico sent shock waves across America. In case you had any doubt, Donald Trump is the real deal. Donald Trump has gravitas. He accomplished what -- in that short meeting, mending fences more so than has been done in the last four years. Now, meanwhile, Hillary Rodham Clinton was in the Hamptons hob knobbing with wealthy elitists, raising millions of dollars and promising who knows what.

That is her history. But the reality is the immigration plan put forth by Mr. Trump puts America first, puts the best interest of America first and not just white Americans, Asian-Americans, Black Americans, but Latino Americans as well. And Latino-Americans are the ones that will go to the polls and vote. That the illegal immigrants are not going to be able to vote. Latino-Americans care about their best interests, care about jobs, care about health care, care about keeping us safe from terrorism. So when you get down, and Donald Trump is going to focus on this issue more and crystallize it in the coming weeks.

BREAM: Yes. Richard is not buying it.


But, Richard, let's talk about the optics of that because there are, you know, these folks that are saying, all in all it was a good day for him. The speech, visit all of that kind of stuff and as David points out, you know, Hillary Clinton has been sort of missing in action. It's been more than 270 days since she's held a press conference, and she was at fund- raisers where some of the people to get in, it was $250,000. Average Americans cannot relate to that.

FOWLER: Here's the thing. I mean we could play this game with Hillary Clinton all we want and talk about what she isn't doing or not doing, but Donald Trump's candidacy is so abysmal that you don't even have to talk about Hillary Clinton. You can just talk about all the missteps that Donald Trump has made. His ten-point immigration plan is not workable. Number one, it explodes the deficit. It's going to explode the deficit to build this wall.

BREAM: How is that? How is that? Because he says we're going to save money but we're spending it on illegal immigration and be able to re-route that money to things for people who are here legally.

FOWLER: I'll tell you how we get there. Building this wall would cost trillions of dollars.


BREAM: Oh, he said, Mexico is going to pay for it.

FOWLER: Mexico has clearly said, they're not going to pay for it.

BREAM: Yes. They disagree with that.

FOWLER: And not to mention the fact that he said he wants to quadruple -- he wants to triple, excuse me, was the word he used, ICE border agents. That's going to cost more money. So, for all the deficit hawks out there, Donald Trump will explode the deficit. And number two --


BREAM: Well, he says in his plan there, he's going to pay for it by cleaning up what we're spending on illegal immigration every year. We got to leave it there. I know we could continue this. Maybe we'll do it on pay-per-view. Maybe we'll continue on pay-per-view. All right? I like that idea. David and Richard, great to see you both.

All right. We also have new fallout tonight from Trump's ten-point immigration plan. Does it mean the Republican nominee is taking back his early promise to deport illegal immigrants? The director of the Center for Immigration Studies joins us, next.


TRUMP: I call it extreme vetting. I call it extreme, extreme vetting. Our country has enough problems.



BREAM: When Donald Trump last week laid out his tough ten-point plan on immigration, some supporters cheered him for holding the line while others were openly wondering what happened to his recent promise to ease up?
Watch a little bit of what's played out over the last week or so.


TRUMP: There certainly can be a softening because we're not looking to hurt people. We want people -- we have some great people in this country.

There will be no amnesty. Our message to the world will be this. You cannot obtain legal status or become a citizen of the United States by illegally entering our country.

Oh, there's softening. Look, we do it in a very humane way, and we're going to see with the people that are in the country. Obviously I want to get the gang members out, the drug peddlers out, I want to get the drug dealers out. Then we're going to make a decision at a later date once everything is stabilized. I think you're going to see there's really quite a bit of softening.


BREAM: Joining me now, executive director at the Center for Immigration Studies, Mark Krikorian. Thanks for being with us tonight.


BREAM: All right. What do you make of the different variations, the nuances of what we've seen on Mr. Trump's positions? Are you confident that he's landed somewhere that you're comfortable with and you think it sticks?

KRIKORIAN: I'm not sure nuances is really the right word for anything that Donald Trump comes up with. But what -- I think the speech that he gave in Phoenix on immigration, really what it did is return to the original immigration plan that he put up on his website something like a year ago, which did not have this talk of deporting all 12 million illegal immigrants in a short period of time. He made that up on his own just off the top of his head. So it's not so much, I think, a softening really or a pivot or whatever word they're using for it.

It's really more going from a kind of amorphous level, a gut reaction that he was giving, you know, at these big rallies to a more thought out, organized, in this case ten-point immigration plan that has a lot of detail to it that's motivated by the same concerns. In other words, the goal to restore control over immigration, but as a real-world thing, not this sort of gut reaction he had about deporting all the illegals, which no immigration restrictionist has ever actually proposed before.

BREAM: Well, why do you think he continues to get tarred and feathered as it were with that? The people who oppose him as critics and objects say he's going to round everybody up. What we actually heard from the Hillary Clinton was he's going to break up families and, you know, in their view, he's still moving forward on that path based, you know, on what he said Wednesday night.

KRIKORIAN: Yes. They said all of that for, you know, Romney as well. You know what I mean? So in a sense, any Democratic campaign is going to say that about any Republican. If Jeb had been nominated or Marco Rubio, they would be saying the same thing. So, I'm not sure there's anything Trump could do to avoid that sort of thing. But the fact remains Trump goes out of his way to, you know, to encourage that sort of thing or at least give an excuse for it. I mean he is the one who said, you know, that we're going to have deportation force that's going to, you know, round up 11 million or 12 million people in the period of a year or two.

That was frankly kind of dumb. The campaign should have cleaned that up the next day. Instead, they let it just hang out there for months, and finally they did come up with a coherent, frankly pretty, you know, organized, real-world way, a set of policies to restore control not just over the physical border with Mexico, but the whole immigration system.

BREAM: Uh-hm. All right. Mark Krikorian, thanks for weighing in on this.
Always good to see you.

KRIKORIAN: Thank you.

BREAM: Our next guest doesn't exactly see things in the same light. In fact, he has called Donald Trump a buffoon when it comes to the issue of immigration. That's not all. Javier Palomarez is the president and CEO of the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, he joins us now.

All right. Javier, not a fan of the Wednesday speech?

JAVIER PALOMAREZ, CEO, US HISPANIC CHAMBER OF COMMERCE: No. Not a fan of the Wednesday speech. Listen, Donald Trump continues to harp on this issue. He created this dragon in 2015 so he could slay it in 2016. It's subterfuge. The United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce collaborated with the George W. Bush Institute on a study. That look, it was a non- partisan study that looked at immigration, and it found over a five-year period of time that net migration between the United States and Mexico will-- 20,000 people over a five year period of time for nations the size of Mexico and the U.S., that's practically zero. And by the way, it was 20,000 more people leaving the United States, going to Mexico, than leaving Mexico and coming to the United States. That's the data. Those are the facts according to the George W. Bush institute.

BREAM: Right. He didn't say anything about rounding up the millions of people. He did say a number of times we don't know how many people are here. We don't know how many millions. He said he wants to get rid of the bad guys, which is the same thing this administration wants to do, get people out who are, you know, serious criminal actors, that kind of thing. But you know, he gave us ten points, and none of them included rounding people up, ripping kids out of their homes, throwing them back across the border.

PALOMAREZ: You know, he made it clear to me that there was no amnesty, which says that he's going to deport -- mass deport, you know, 11 million undocumented workers. In the context of Labor Day, let's look at what this would do to the American labor force. Who's going to clean those kitchens?
Who's going to pluck the chickens? Who's going to pick that crop? Who's going to package that meat? Who's going to --

BREAM: Can Americans not do that work?

PALOMAREZ: Absolutely, and if they would, if they were willing to do it, they'd be doing it now. We wouldn't have the immigrants here doing it.

BREAM: Well, you know that people on the other side of this argument say that the depressed wages and the illegal immigration from people coming in here who aren't tracked and may not be paying taxes likely aren't, when the wages are suppressed, why should they pay Americans $15 or $20 an hour to do that?

PALOMAREZ: You know the reality of it is, if Americans wanted to do that work, it would be done by Americans right now. There have been opportunities for that to happen. This is an economic issue. At the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, we look at comprehensive immigration reform as an economic imperative for the continued wellbeing of this nation. There are literally millions of jobs being filled by these individuals.

BREAM: Uh-hm.

PALOMAREZ: If they mass deport these individuals, who's going to do that work and at what cost? And what is the downstream cost to the American people? By the way, to deport them is going to be about $400 billion, and it will take about 20 years to get it done.

BREAM: Yes. And I think Mr. Trump --

PALOMAREZ: Donald Trump is a threat to the American economy.

BREAM: He was clear that he's got a whole lot of other priorities before he ever gets to that discussion, so we'll see. And you know the wall is number one. We'll stand by. Javier, thank you so much.

PALOMAREZ: Thank you for having me.

BREAM: Coming up, Donald Trump promised to beef up our Southern security. And we're going to hear from the Border Patrol Council on what that would take exactly.

And then Sheriff Joe and Jose Antonio Vargas join me on the fallout from the front-lines.


TRUMP: We're also going to hire 5,000 more border patrol agents.  




KELLY WRIGHT, FOX NEWS AMERICA'S NEWS HEADQUARTER CO-HOST: Live from "America's News Headquarters," I'm Kelly Wright, good evening. Congress returns tomorrow from its seven-week summer break. High on their agenda, the dreaded mosquito borne Zika virus. Lawmakers are at odds over how much money to fund eradication efforts.

Last winter, President Obama requested nearly $2 billion, but Republicans reneged. Since then, a number of cases have sprung up in this country, most of them in Florida. The governor was to travel to D.C. tomorrow to lobby congress for money. That trip will be delayed while Florida recovers from former hurricane Hermine.

Speaking of Hermine, forecasters continue to keep an eye on the storm as it churns several hundred miles off New York's Long Island. Hermine is bringing rain, riptides, and high surf to the northeast. It's responsible for three deaths in the south. That's a look at news this hour. I'm Kelly Wright. Now back to "The Kelly File."


TRUMP: We're also going to hire 5,000 more Border Patrol agents. Who gave me their endorsements, 16,500 gave me their endorsement. And put more of them on the border instead of behind desks, which is good. We will expand the number of Border Patrol stations significantly.


BREAM: That was Donald Trump during his fiery immigration speech last Wednesday night, talking about boosting manpower on the southern border and raising questions about how the agents on the front lines see this issue. Joining me now, Shawn Moran, the vice president and spokesman for the National Border Patrol Council. Sean, thank you for joining us. Your reaction to what you heard from Mr. Trump.

SHAWN MORAN, NATIONAL BORDER PATROL COUNCIL SPOKESMAN: Well, I'm very encouraged. Finally we have a presidential candidate that's actually talking about border security and not just reforming the immigration system and giving amnesty within the first 100 days.

BREAM: So, he talked last night about hiring a lot more Border Patrol agents. Would that help you? Do policies need to change? What would be a real world difference for you and the men and women on the front lines?

MORAN: Well, it's really hard to say because right now we're down over 1,500 agents, and the Obama administration has refused to fill those positions so obviously we need the manpower, but what I think we need most is a good policy that allows us to go out and do our jobs.

I don't know what the number of Border Patrol agents it's going to take to secure the border because we've never been allowed to do the job. I think the last Border Patrol agents that were actually allowed to secure the border have been retired for about two decades.

BREAM: How tough is it for you and the men and women who are working out there because, you know, we do stories all the time about Border Patrol agents who get in trouble who try to do the jobs they say that they think they were hired to do and including, you know, in the last couple of year a lawsuit by those who said we can't even do our constitutional duty and the oath we took on the front lines every day.

MORAN: It's very difficult because we're being told that border security is a priority. But you see more exceptions to the immigration laws and cutting out entire sections of the law, welcoming people here, and it creates an imbalance. You see that with the Central American children. We're not taking that threat seriously, and we're on pace to exceed the numbers we saw in 2014, which were an all-time high because the problem hasn't been dealt with, and it's been over three years now.

BREAM: Yeah, and that creates a humanitarian crisis that all of us have compassion towards people who are taking very risky paths and flights to try to get here. But, again, without the magnet drawing them here, you have to question whether so many would be willing to take those risks. Shawn Moran, thank you very much for joining us.

MORAN: Thank you Shannon.

BREAM: Also with us tonight, Trump supporter and Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio along with Jose Antonio Vargas. He is the editor of Emerging U.S. and founder of Great to see you both. Sheriff, I'll start with you. Mr. Trump made a lot of promises there, but you heard one of our guest earlier say, who's going to pay for it?

JOE ARPAIO, MARICOPA COUNTY SHERIFF: Well, you know, why are we worrying about pay, about money, when we are being flooded with drugs from Mexico and illegal immigrants, crime? So I don't understand the money issue. That really should not be an issue. The issue should be to do something about the problem.

At least Donald Trump has a great plan, 10-point plan, which by the way, is a no-brainer when you really look at every item he's talking about. But there's one thing that's missing, and it's sort of a personal thing with me because I was the director in Mexico City, head of the federal drug enforcement and also the border. I can go on and on. Turkey.

You have to stop this problem in the foreign country. You have to stop it in Mexico. You have to crack down in Mexico on the drugs and illegal immigration. Now, we talk about the Border Patrol. I would love to see the Border Patrol go across that border bilaterally, work with the Mexican authorities like I did with the Mexican army, and stop -- stop this problem. Stop the drug traffic coming across the border.

Nobody talks about cracking down in Mexico, including Hillary and Obama. How many times have they ever been to Mexico to talk to the president to crack down on it? No, they don't want to insult that country. So we have to do it over there.

BREAM: All right. Let's bring in Jose here. I got to ask you, do you object to what the sheriff has laid out there about some cross-border cooperation, about very real problems? I mean when Donald Trump was in Mexico and he talked with the president, they both talked about this traffic is going both ways, and it's bad for both countries.

JOSE ANTONIO VARGAS, EMERGING U.S. EDITOR: By the way, there is no correlation -- there is no study that's been done correlating violence with illegal immigration, right? Undocumented people like me are not causing more violence here in the United States. There's no study that has said that.

BREAM: But that there are families and that we heard -- there are families we heard from who clearly...

VARGAS: Absolutely.

BREAM: ...their loved ones would still be alive had the person who killed them not been in this country illegally.

VARGAS: Absolutely. And my compassion and my empathy and my sadness for that, right? Criminals should be deported, absolutely. But the vast majority of the millions of undocumented people in this country are not committing any -- are not killing anybody. We're not murderers. We're not rapists. We're not here to do that. And you talked about magnet by the way.

Here's one magnet. Why is it that we put a sign outside the U.S.-Mexico border that says "Keep Out" and then ten yards in, what do we say? "Help Wanted," right. Like we are a country addicted to cheap labor. Employers in this country exploit and take advantage of undocumented workers who they pay less.

BREAM: Would ah agree that one of the things that would work would be something like e-Verify, and requiring it across the board where if you're going to hire someone, you have to be accountable for their status?

VARGAS: Employers -- employers, to me, are the biggest magnet for undocumented workers in this country.

BREAM: So e-verify?

VARGAS: And the fact that we as a country are addicted to cheap labor. By the way, I was -- as an undocumented worker, I went through e-Verify, and it didn't work.


VARGAS: As an undocumented person in this country, there should be a process for us to know who's here illegally. Absolutely.

BREAM: That would benefit everyone, I think.

VARGAS: I came forward and said I am here illegally. We need a process. We need to figure this out.

BREAM: All right, I want to give the final quick word here to the sheriff.

ARPAIO: Well, you know, the wall is not just for illegal immigration. It's for the drugs destroying our nation, our young people, the heroin that's been going on for years and years. Nobody seems to be addressing that problem. It's all this illegal immigration. That's important, but don't forget where all the drugs are coming from, destroying our nation, inner city problems, I can go on and on. So let's talk about that.

BREAM: We got to leave it there, but that is something that Donald Trump and the president of Mexico agreed as a big issue, bad for both countries and needs to be other addressed. Sheriff, Jose, great to see you both.

ARPAIO: Thank you.

VARGAS: Thank you.

BREAM: Up next, family members of Americans killed by illegals gather to support Donald Trump on his immigration plan. And when we come back, we will talk with Mary Ann Mendoza, whose police officer son was killed by an illegal immigrant. We're going to ask her about what she thinks has to change.


BREAM: Throughout the 2016 election, the issue of immigration reform has provided a platform for emotional stories of American lives lost at the hands of the illegal immigrants. One of those stories is Sarah Root, and Donald Trump has recently been making her a household name. Trace Gallagher is in our West Coast newsroom with more on Sarah's story, Trace.

GALLAGHER: Shannon, it was January 31st when Iowa natives Scott and Michelle Root got a late night call saying their 21-year-old daughter, Sarah, who was celebrating her college graduation, had been involved in a car accident. When the Root's arrived at the hospital, they learned their straight-A student daughter had been struck by a street-racing drunk driver. Her spinal cord snapped, skull fractured, face swollen beyond recognition.

Her parents were first to identify her by a "Live, Laugh, and Love" tattoo on her rib cage. Doctors put her chance of survival at zero, but the Root's kept her on life support long enough to allow her organs to be donated. Their nightmare soon became national news when the illegal immigrant driver who struck Sarah, with a blood alcohol level three times the legal limit made bail. Even though Eswin Mejia was charged with vehicular manslaughter and ordered back for screening, it didn't matter.

He had fled the country. The Roots later found out he had two previous arrests for drunk driving, but did not show up to court for either of those charges. The judge who released him on bail for the death of Sarah Root wasn't informed of the earlier charges because Mejia didn't meet the quote "enforcement priorities of immigration and customs enforcement." Donald Trump is now highlighting Sarah's story. Watch.


TRUMP: The man who killed her arrived at the border, entered federal custody, and then was released into the U.S. -- think of it -- into the U.S. community under the policies of the White House, Barack Obama, and Hillary Clinton.


GALLAGHER: The Roots are now pushing Sarah's law that calls for stricter detention laws. Mejia is currently on ICE's most wanted list, Shannon.

BREAM: All right. Trace, thank you very much. That story you just heard hits close to home for our next guest. In 2014, an illegal immigrant who had been living in the U.S. for two decades was driving drunk when he took the promising life of Sergeant Brandon Mendoza. Now Mendoza's mother is speaking out on immigration and putting her support behind Donald Trump.

Immigration reform advocate Mary Ann Mendoza joins me now. Mary Ann, we thank you for your time. Can you tell us what it is like, first of all, to get the news that you've lost a child and to have the complicating factor that that involved somebody who shouldn't have even been here, that had -- you've been able to go back and time and that person never made it to this country or been deported along with previous criminal convictions and arrests, your son may still be here.

MARY ANN MENDOZA, SON KILLED BY ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT: Absolutely. He would be here. You know, I got a call at 3:00 in the morning from Afghanistan, from a fellow police officer who was also in the National Guard, telling me my son had been in an accident, and my world came crumbling apart from that moment on. And Brandon was a spoke in my wheel that will never be replaced.
The wheel will never turn the same again in my family. But listening to some of your previous guests, I want to just say this.

The Hispanic community that are Americans, I find it very hard to believe that they're offended and would call Donald Trump racist for standing up for people who are doing something illegally that Hispanic-Americans have done legally. They've taken the time to become citizens the right way, and this -- this program, this whole 10-steps that he outlined at his immigration speech is not only protecting them. It's protecting Americans, and we need to stop putting a division and saying the Hispanic people don't support him.

The black people don't support him. He has little chance of making it. We are all Americans, and why is the media trying to further racially divide this country and make a point that votes from those people don't count? We are Americans, and we all need to stand up for the things that Donald Trump is doing to save every one of our lives and our children's lives and our country.

BREAM: Well, your son served our country in multiple ways, and we know that you are now fighting for his legacy and carrying on, trying to spare any other family from the same grief that you have suffered. Mary Ann Mendoza, we thank you for your time and for sharing your story.

MENDOZA: Thank you for having me.

BREAM: Up next, Howie Kurtz on the media's reaction to Donald Trump's immigration plans and whether reporters are treating both sides the same way.


BREAM: For days we have seen a frantic series of media stories with reporters chasing what they saw as a major shift in position from the Republican presidential nominee. As it first, well, it seemed like Donald Trump was indeed softening his stand on illegal immigration, but when we got to the big Wednesday night speech, he painted a dire picture of what could happen if the U.S. does not secure its borders. Howard Kurtz is host of "Media Buzz" on Fox News and joins us. Hi, Howie.

HOWARD KURTZ, FOX NEWS MEDIA BUZZ SHOW HOST: Hi, Shannon. Well, in the run up to Donald Trump's Mexican visit and that speech on immigration, there was an avalanche of media analysis on whether he was guilty of that dreaded journalistic term of flip-flop. The Trump campaign calls that coverage unfair.

It sure seemed that Trump was backing away from the stance he took during the primaries that all 11 million illegal immigrants in this country would be deported and would have to be vetted before they could return. At one point, during a town hall with Sean Hannity, Trump asked the crowd's opinion and that period brought sharp criticism from the pundits.


TRUMP: Number one, we'll say throw out. Number two, we work with them. Ready? Number one.


Number two.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I mean one of the biggest policy shifts or flip-flops or whatever you want to call it between the primary and the general election that we've ever seen.

CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: That undermines everything he's ever said, and you have to question did he ever mean it? I think the answer is probably no.


KURTZ: Trump's running mate complained that the press kept harping on the subject of mass deportations.


MIKE PENCE, REPUBLICAN VICE-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I know the media wants to focus on that one issue. Donald Trump will articulate a policy about how we deal with that population.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't understand why it's the fault of the media for focusing on an issue that you're crediting Donald Trump for bringing to the fore.


KURTZ: But Trump said in Arizona that he wouldn't move against most of the11 million illegal immigrants, those who haven't committed crimes, until the rest of his plan has been carried out, which he acknowledged would take several years. So, was the press biased in saying Trump had flip-flopped?
Not really.

He significantly changed his position on a key part of his signature issue. Now, the media, even some of Trump's fiercest critics were far more positive about Trump's surprise visit with Mexico's president, providing a visual of him on the world stage.

But many journalists slammed the red meat speech as too harsh with "Politico" calling Trump's entire day a farce. It's worth recalling that the press is not always consistent in applying the flip-flop label. Hillary Clinton opposed same-sex marriage in her first presidential campaign, then changed her view after president Obama did just three years ago. But that was widely described as an evolution, Shannon.

BREAM: An excellent point, Howie. All right, so let's talk about this issue now of immigration and sort of the mindset. Do you feel that there is -- you can't paint everyone with the same brush, but do you feel that there's sort of a default position that many in the media have about the issue of immigration and immigration reform and that it impacts the way that they view and report these issues and events?

KURTZ: I have observed that, and it's been going on for several years. It goes back to when George W. Bush was pushing immigration reform, when Marco Rubio and the Gang of Eight were pushing immigration reform during the first Obama term. The press generally defaults, at least in the underlying tone, toward thinking that's a good idea.

Therefore, Shannon, a lot of journalists were horrified when Donald Trump, during the primaries, had success in selling the message of, you know, temporary ban on Muslim immigrants and all that. So now it's kind of payback time because journalists feel, well, he finally had to back off that even though he hasn't quite described it as a change in policy. That's what it is and that's why you keep hearing that term flip-flop, flip-flop.

BREAM: All right, Howard Kurtz in Washington, great to see you.

KURTZ: Good to see you, Shannon.

BREAM: And we will be right back.


BREAM: It is a tough topic, but it is one worthy of conversation. No matter how difficult it may be. So we want to hear what you think. Go to Tell us what you think about the show. Thanks for watching. I'm Shannon Bream in for Megyn Kelly. This is 'The Kelly File.'

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