Former Vice President Joe Biden, a 2020 presidential candidate, refused to apologize for deportations that occurred under the Obama administration when speaking to activists at a campaign stop.
The Obama administration deported more undocumented immigrants than the Trump administration has so far. According to Axios, the Obama administration’s deportation level exceeded 385,000 annually compared to 250,000 deportations in 2018 and 282,000 to date in 2019 under Trump.
While campaigning in Dover, N.H., on Friday, a Spanish-speaking man told Biden his brother was detained and deported when Obama was president.
“I have a three-month-old daughter and two months ago, in May, I was detained and put into deportation proceedings,” he said through the help of a translator. “I want you to apologize to the three million immigrants that were deported and separated from their families under the Obama years.”
He also called on Biden to “commit to stopping all deportations and detentions if you are elected president.”
“No,” Biden told the man. “I will not halt deportations and detentions.”
Protestors chanted “apologize now.”
“You want me to answer your question?” Biden said to the man. “No, you don’t really.”
Biden elaborated on his position and said that he would deport illegal immigrants who are convicted of “serious felonies” rather than those found guilty of misdemeanors.