On the September 19 edition of CNN’s New Day, Corey Lewandowski speculated that the NY bombing suspect, Ahmad Khan Rahami, may not have entered the country legally.
ALISYN CAMEROTA (CO-HOST): Corey, to suggest that there would be more and more terror attacks across the country, is that the right tone for a morning like this?
COREY LEWANDOWSKI: Well, I think what it is, is it rehighlights the problems we have with our immigration system. What we know is that 40 percent of the people who are in the country illegally have overstayed their visas. And what we hear from the reports this morning is that this person is either potentially of Afghani descent or —
CAMEROTA: A naturalized citizen. That’s not overstaying his visa.
LEWANDOWSKI: Is that what the report is for this person who’s committed potentially a terrorist attack on this country?
CHRIS CUOMO (CO-HOST): Yes, he’s a naturalized citizen. Not a refugee. Didn’t overstay a visa.
LEWANDOWSKI: If that’s the case, did he come into the country legally? Was the proper work done? Look, don’t forget, the San Bernardino killer came in on a K1 visa.
CAMEROTA: Right, but this is different. I mean, you’re making a connection that we don’t know yet.
LEWANDOWSKI: But what Donald Trump is saying, and what he has said from the beginning, is we want to make sure that our immigration policy is such that we don’t have potential terrorists coming here, first and foremost. And that’s very, very important.
CUOMO: What it sounds like he’s doing, and this is what I want your take on, is it sounds like he’s trying to make the most of the potential bad news in this situation. And that’s OK, as long as it’s based on an understanding of a new threat. You can always change your feelings about things as facts change. What does he know about this situation that justifies in any way an understanding of increased threat from what existed three days ago?
LEWANDOWSKI: Look, I haven’t been part of his security briefings, and neither he nor Hillary Clinton have received that. I don’t know what those briefings have entailed. But what I do know very clearly is he has said we’re going to be tough, we’re going to be strong, we’re going to root out terrorism in our country. And, look, if you look back at the Brussels attack, he called that early before anyone else was willing to say it was a terrorist attack. And so, what he has said is we need a president who is going to be tough and firm and make sure our borders are secure and that protects our people.The number one job, in my opinion, of the president of the United States is to protect our people both here and abroad.
Transcript via Media Matters.