(Yahoo!News) Donald Trump’s pick to lead the Department of Labor strongly defended immigration reform in remarks several years ago and also criticized border security as a waste of money and overly intrusive — positions that put him at odds with the president-elect’s campaign promises to crack down on immigration.
Andrew Puzder, CEO of the fast-food chain conglomerate CKE Restaurants, said that passing immigration reform that offered a path to legalization for many of the millions of undocumented immigrants in the country was “the right thing to do” and would boost the economy, in a question-and-answer session organized by conservative think tank the American Enterprise Institute in 2013.
Puzder’s belief that immigration reform could be an economic boon was once firmly implanted in the Republican mainstream, with Republicans willing to join a bipartisan effort to pass comprehensive immigration reform as recently as 2013. But the victory of Trump, who campaigned on building a giant wall on the U.S.-Mexico border and said that Mexico has sent “rapists” to the United States, demonstrated that the Republican base rejects that thinking.
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