Words Do Matter: CNN’s Bolduan Berates Rick Perry on Immigration With Liberal Talking Points

Thursday’s edition of New Day on CNN included co-host Kate Bolduan's continued efforts to loyally follow the Obama administration by lobbying and mocking anyone who dared suggest that they do not support the President or his immigration policy. Today’s guest in the hot seat was Texas Governor Rick Perry. 

From start to finish in the eight minute plus interview, Bolduan attacked Perry on everything from securing the border to solving the issue of the undocumented illegal immigrant children to whether he “could get past the politics” and support President Obama. [MP3 audio here; Video below]

All too often during the interview, the phrase that she continually referred to is “words matter” or “words do matter.” I couldn’t have said it any better.

She began the interview by talking about the meeting Obama and Perry had on Wednesday in Texas and Obama’s refusal to come down to the U.S.-Mexico border. From there, she refused to acknowledge the necessity of securing the nation’s border by repeatedly asking him what will he do about all the children that have crossed the border:

if you have a surge of National Guardsmen no matter how many people you put at the border, you've still got to deal with the crisis, the immediate crisis at hand, what to do with the tens of thousands of kids that are already through and already sitting here on our side of the border. What do you do with those kids, governor?

Next, she brought up the president’s multi-billion dollar request for funding at the border and asked him if he was “going to come out and support him to have that passed?”

Speaking of words that should matter, Bolduan never mentioned that The Washington Post reported in Thursday's paper that Governor Perry wrote Obama a letter two years ago raising: 

a red alarm about an influx of unaccompanied children crossing the southern border, citing federal statistics showing that the number of minors had shot up 90 percent....Two years later, Perry’s letter appears prescient. The number of unaccompanied children at the border, which was 5,200 in 2012, has shot up to more than 52,000 this year — and it could reach 90,000 by the end of September, according to internal Border Patrol estimates.

This was only the latest example of Bolduan's attacks on conservative guests as she pushed Congressman Jim Bridenstine (R-Okla.) to support the president's request for funding on Tuesday as well as Senator John Cornyn (R-Texas) on Wednesday.

Anyway, the segment spiraled downward even further when she mocked his stance on securing the border. She hounded him by saying: 

But beyond getting, beyond showing up – at the border and talking the prescription of what to do about stemming the surge, stemming this flood like you think is so important and then also dealing with this crisis of all of these kids on the border, him showing up at the border, that's not going to do anything about it. It's got to be dealt with either with governors like yourself or through Congress. 

The second half of the interview centered around recent remarks Perry made about how could so many people be coming across illegally without the possibility of outside help. After Perry said that he both wasn’t being conspiratorial in wondering how this could have happened and nor did he want to be, Bolduan closed the interview this way: 

BOLDUAN: I'm just asking, governor, because words matter. You know that.

PERRY: I totally understand, but the real issue here rather than getting into a semantics battle is whether or not this president is going to lead this country. 

BOLDUAN: Can you work hand in hand though with the president that you criticize so harshly on an issue that is so important to you? Can you get past the politics? 

PERRY: I did today, so I suspect we will. 

Once the interview was over, the thrashing was not over. Substitute co-host John Berman complimented Bolduan on her interview and the two proceeded to mock and criticize Perry. 

JOHN BERMAN: Interesting interview. Particularly at the end there. Pay no attention to what I said, let's not talk about the words that I actually said out loud. Let’s pay attention to other things.

BOLDUAN: Words matter on both sides on this, and that's why you've got to ask.

BERMAN: Yeah. Great point. Gotta press him on it.

Relevant portions of transcript from the July 10 New Day segment are transcribed below.

CNN 

New Day

July 10, 2014

6:03 a.m. Eastern

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: President & Texas Governor Talk Immigration]

KATE BOLDUAN: I did have a chance to speak with Governor Rick Perry after he had that meeting with the president. Here is some of our conversation. You meet with the president after quite a bit of fanfare. He leaves the meeting saying that some of what you said, he thinks, makes quite a bit of sense. How would you describe the meeting. Are you guys on the same page? 

GOVERNOR RICK PERRY (R-TEXAS): I certainly think that what I said made a lot of sense, and I don't know we're on the same page or not. 

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: New This Morning; Governor Perry Reacts to Immigration Meeting]

(....)

BOLDUAN: You have requested that he still come down to the border. You're saying that it's very important to see. He says that he doesn't want to be part of theater, that he's not interested in photo-ops.

PERRY: It's not theater. 

BOLDUAN: He's basically saying that's what that would be. 

PERRY: It's not theater. The American people expected to see their president when there's a disaster. He showed up at Sandy. Why can't he show up on the border of Texas? 

BOLDUAN: On the issue of border and you're talking about the National Guardsmen there, if you have a surge of National Guardsmen no matter how many people you put at the border, you've still got to deal with the crisis, the immediate crisis at hand, what to do with the tens of thousands of kids that are already through and already sitting here on our side of the border. What do you do with those kids, governor? 

PERRY: But you first have to staunch -- that's a symptom. The children are a symptom of policies that have enticed them to come. 

(....)

BOLDUAN: One of the things that the president said is a lot of what you have suggested is part of this emergency funding that he's asking Congress for. He says that it hits the targets that you're talking about, especially trying to get these children through the immigration system faster to process them faster if they do make it over here. Are you going to come out and support him to have that passed? 

PERRY: I'm going to come out and support the president to secure the border because if he doesn't do that first, I'm not sure the American people are going to trust the president, our Congress to do what is required. They look back in history which has not particularly treated them well from the standpoint of border security. So when the president -- and the president could do this very quickly, again, and I told him today. I said, Mr. President, take the action. I said put the onus on Congress, but you first have to act, Mr. President. That's what leadership is all about. 

(....)

PERRY: Well, I think when you look at the president's actions, particularly on this issue, you have Democrats that are asking for the president to come to the border, both Congressman Vela and Congressman Hinojosa as well as--

BOLDUAN: But beyond getting, beyond showing up –

PERRY: – Henry Cuellar have asked for him to come.

BOLDUAN: – at the border and talking the prescription of what to do about stemming the surge, stemming this flood like you think is so important and then also dealing with this crisis of all of these kids on the border, him showing up at the border, that's not going to do anything about it. It's got to be dealt with either with governors like yourself or through Congress. 

PERRY: So actions are really important? 

BOLDUAN: Yeah. 

(....)

BOLDUAN: But words are important here as well, and you're saying, as you think, as Republicans believe, that the president's words and talking about the D.R.E.A.M. Act previously, that has sent the wrong message to Central America, so words do matter in this debate. Do you really honestly believe, as you said in the interview last month, that the administration might be in on this somehow? I mean, you're suggesting there's some kind of conspiracy here. 

PERRY: No. What I'm suggesting is that this administration and their words and their actions or the lack thereof are part of the problem. I think you're putting the words of conspiracy in my mouth which I did not say. 

BOLDUAN: No, you actually did say the word “I hate to be conspiratorial, but I mean how do you move that many people from Central America.”

PERRY: And I hate to be conspiratorial, I hate to be conspiratorial. I did not say I was. 

BOLDUAN: “How can you move that many people from Central America across Mexico and then into the United States without there being a fairly coordinated effort.”

PERRY: I don't know. 

BOLDUAN: I'm just asking, governor, because words matter. You know that.

PERRY: I totally understand, but the real issue here rather than getting into a semantics battle is whether or not this president is going to lead this country. 

BOLDUAN: Can you work hand in hand though with the president that you criticize so harshly on an issue that is so important to you? Can you get past the politics? 

PERRY: I did today, so I suspect we will. 

(....)

JOHN BERMAN: Interesting interview. Particularly at the end there. Pay no attention to what I said, let's not talk about the words that I actually said out loud. Let’s pay attention to other things.

BOLDUAN: Words matter on both sides on this, and that's why you've got to ask.

BERMAN: Yeah. Great point. Gotta press him on it.

Curtis Houck
Curtis Houck
Curtis Houck is a news analyst for the Media Research Center's News Analysis Division