Ronan Farrow Relates US Immigration Crisis To Jewish People Fleeing Hitler

Ronan Farrow devoted a significant portion of his July 9 show to attempting to coopt the storied heroism of Raoul Wallenberg to spin the Mexican border crisis. The MSNBC host invited the US Ambassador to Sweden Mark Brzezinski and Swedish Ambassador to the US Bjorn Lyrvall onto Ronan Farrow Daily to discuss the accomplishments of the Swedish humanitarian who saved thousands of Jewish lives during the Holocaust and the Congressional Gold Medal to be awarded to his surviving half-sister.

After the interview, Farrow turned to his two favorite liberal pundits, Karen Finney – of the canceled Disrupt news show – and Howard Fineman of The Huffington Post for their analysis about how we should take to heart the “lesson of Raoul Wallenberg” not to “turn away these people as they’re being persecuted.” [See video below. Click here for MP3]

Unsurprisingly, when Farrow asked Finney what “the president need[s] to do to stop this problem,” she blamed the insufficient US response on the “racist conversation that tends to happen when we talk about immigration reform.” While “the measures that” the president is “is looking at in terms of the initial crisis at the border right now are right,” Finney explained, “I do think we need to have a little bit more of a moral conversation.”

So rather than answering the question, the former DNC communications chief took a swipe at average Americans who are skeptical of immigration reform. Classy.

For his part, Huffington Post journalist Howard Fineman went on to blame the Republican-led House of Representatives which “is unable to be vigilant of its own activities, let alone what’s going on in the world right now.”

According to Ronan Farrow, “these are men and women and children, as we know in the border crisis, being persecuted, that are fleeing violence” are akin to the Jewish people fleeing Hitler’s death camps.

Obama as modern-day Raoul Wallenberg. That’s quite the yarn the Lean Forward network is spinning.

See transcript below:

MSNBC
Ronan Farrow Daily
July 8, 2014
1:20 p.m. Eastern
1 minute and 50 seconds


RONAN FARROW: We have been talking about immigration, you guys. Karen, what more does the president need to do to stop this problem?

KAREN FINNEY: Well, I mean, I think the measures that he’s looking at in terms of the initial crisis at the border right now are right. But I do think we need to have a little bit more of a moral conversation. I mean, just listening to that conversation, I mean, this is a humanitarian crisis what we’re seeing with this children now and also -- I mean, it's become, you know, it is a very racist conversation that tends to happen when we talk about immigration reform and what we’ve seen recently, some of the images that we’ve seen of the protests, you know, of buses filled with these children and people, you know, the angry protests, I think we need to remember our humanity a little bit more in this conversation.

FARROW: Right, if there's a lesson of Raoul Wallenberg it is don't turn away these people as they’re being persecuted. And these are men and women and children, as we know in the border crisis, being persecuted, that are fleeing violence. Howard, is Congress to blame here? Is the gridlock actually reforming the system to accommodate these people coming in the problem?

HOWARD FINEMAN: Well, the problem is that immigration is a, as an issue, as a challenge to the United States is a moving target. It constantly needs to be revisited. You can't have one law that lasts forever that’s never been that way it’s been in the United States. It needs constant vigilance by Congress. Congress is unable to be vigilant of its own activities let alone what’s going on in the world right now. And it's a tragedy because as Karen said there's a moral dimension, there’s a managerial dimension, there’s a law enforcement dimension. None of which are being properly handled because Congress is the only place where it can be properly debated and that is not happening and that, too, is something that Raoul Wallenberg would be concerned about today.

FARROW: Howard, I think you really summed it up. It is a tragedy. Karen, Howard, really appreciate it.

Laura Flint
Laura Flint is a 2014 summer intern for the MRC's News Analysis Division.