'New York Times' op-ed columnist Thomas Friedman appeared on CNN to discuss his visit to the U.S.-Mexico border that left him believing there is a "real immigration crisis" and the solution is a "high wall."
"The whole day left me more certain than ever that we a real immigration crisis and that the solution is a high wall with a big gate - but a smart gate," he wrote.
"A big gate, a smart gate and a compassionate gate, I said," Friedman said. Wolf, I'm as radically pro-immigration as they come. But it is pretty clear to me that unless we can assure a significant number of Americans that we can control our border, we're never going to have the proper immigration flow I think we need, we desire and that we actually have a moral responsibility given our history as a nation of immigrants and a refuge for people fleeing persecution."
"I think the only way is a compromise on this," he said." The tragedy and that's why my column -- I think Trump is wasting this crisis. A crisis is a terrible thing to waste. We have a president who actually, when you think about it, Wolf, he has the chops with his base. If he were to sit down, call Nancy Pelosi and say, 'We're going up to Camp David. You bring your immigration team, I'll bring mine. I'll leave Stephen Miller at home and we will actually sort out a compromise here.:
"Democrats were ready to fund more border security but at the same time we'll create a legal pathway for people here. We're going to limit the number of I.C.E. arrests and we're going to have a rational in-flow of people of the kind of people that are both high energy, high IQ that could drive our country forward. We need a compromise," he said.
"When you say, though, you want a high wall with a big gate, a smart gate. But a high wall, that is going to sound to a lot of folks out there, that's what Donald Trump wants," CNN's Wolf Blitzer said.
"Well, I think you got to control the border," the columnist said. "When you have an increase of illegal apprehensions of illegal entries of 374% since October, obviously you've got a situation where the border security is not sufficient and that's going to drive people who we should want to be pro-immigration against immigration."
"Democrats have been willing to fund more border security, okay. I'm for a high wall with a big gate, a compassionate, a smart gate so we could keep immigration going," he said.
"Wolf, if people think can just walk into this country, they're not going to support the immigration that we need," Friedman concluded.