Donald Trump's Border Ad Shows Chaotic Morocco, Not Boring America
This is not what the U.S.-Mexico border looks like, either today or tomorrow
You know how the border scene in Republican frontrunner Donald Trump's they-keep-coming ad looks all chaotic and Third Worldy? That's because it's lifted from footage of the chaotic Third World.
Politifact becomes the second fact-checking outfit to do some tip-top work today by identifying that the video used at around the 0:22-0:25 mark—when the narrator is busy reassuring us that Trump will "stop illegal immigration by building a wall on our southern border that Mexico will pay for"—is actually 18-month old Italian television footage of
Moroccans crossing the border into Melilla, one of two enclaves on the Moroccan coast that are held by Spain. Migrants who cross the border there are essentially entering territory held by a European Union nation, even though they are still on the African continent. (It can also be seen posted by a YouTube user here.)
You can understand why Trump's ad people had to reach out 5,000 miles to find suitably alarming footage. As the anti-Trumpian Rep. Beto O'Rourke (D-El Paso) told me in a recent interview, one of the great misconceptions about the U.S.-Mexico border is that it's crawling with humanity away from the official entry points:
reason: […] What has the growth of the Border Patrol since the mid-'90s actually changed at the border?
O'Rourke: In the El Paso sector, which I think is, in terms of manpower if not size, the largest Border Patrol sector, last year there were four and a half apprehensions for the entire year on average per agent.
O'Rourke: This goes back to the diminishing returns that we were talking about. And nationally it may be like three, maybe three and a half times that; I don't think it's above 15 nationally. That's for the whole year. When I'm talking about this with people they say, "You mean a month? A week?" No, it's for the whole year.
Meanwhile, Katy Tur of NBC News is attributing this quote to Trump's campaign manager: "No shit its not the Mexican border but thats what our country is going to look like if we don't do anything." That's not exactly true, either, but truth to the Trump campaign is a bit like apostrophes.