On December 20, hours before the U.S. House voted to add funding for Trump’s racist border wall to a short-term spending bill, dozens of activists organized by Minnesota Caravan Solidarity and the Anti-War Committee converged on Senator Amy Klobuchar’s Minneapolis office to demand NO wall funding whatsoever and an overall end to militarized border policing.
Klobuchar, ever the “pragmatist,” had appeared on ABC News in November to complain that Senate Democrats had tried to negotiate with Donald Trump on funding for the wall, “but he wouldn’t take yes for an answer.” Klobuchar insinuated that some reform on the treatment of “DREAMers” – undocumented immigrants who arrived as children – could be tendered in exchange for her support for Trump’s wall.
Her actual record on this topic can be ascertained by her behavior during the brief government shutdown early in 2018, which was triggered by a dispute over legislation concerning undocumented immigrants previously in the purview of the DACA program (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals), which Trump had declared ended. Klobuchar was a member of the “bipartisan,” “moderate” group which ended this shutdown without accomplishing anything whatsoever on behalf of immigrants. She later congratulated herself on her amoral careerism, saying “People were really talking together and there was never one negative thing said.”
The activists who convened in front of Klobuchar’s office Dec. 20 had a rather different perspective. Victor Ramirez-Juarez, speaking for the Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee insisted that “negotiating to find common ground [with Trump] further steers us away from a more humane solution.” He later endorsed the Honduran refugee demand for reparations from the United States. His comments ended with a chant of “Legalization
The gathering also briefly chanted “Fuera JOH!” in solidarity with the Honduran people’s resistance to the stolen 2017 Honduran elections.
Dave Walkston, speaking for Veterans for Peace, pointed out the extreme right-wing swing of U.S. border policy over the past few decades and called Trump’s wall an “abomination” and a “disgrace.”
Autumn Lake, speaking for the Anti-War Committee, connected Klobuchar’s “border security” to militarized policing of communities of color within the U.S., to the deprivation of the working class’s basic needs, and to U.S. imperialist policy in Latin America under both Democratic and Republican presidential administrations. Lake concluded: “The people of Minnesota demand an end to the militarization of the U.S.-Mexico border. Asylum is a right! From Palestine to Mexico, these border walls have got to go!”
All progressive people should support these activists and refuse to throw their lots in with Amy Klobuchar and other careerist Democratic Party politicians, for the sake of asylum seekers, oppressed nations, and the entire multinational working class.