Obama says it's OK to ask immigrants to learn English

Former President Barack Obama recently suggested “it’s not racist” to say immigrants in the U.S. should learn English. 

“Should we want to encourage newcomers to learn the language of the country that are moving to? Of course. Does that mean that they can never use their own language? No. Of course that doesn’t mean that,” Obama stated at a recent town hall held in Berlin, Germany.

“It’s not racist to say if you’re going to be here, then you should learn the language of the country that you just arrived at, because we need to have some sort of common language in which all of us can work and learn and understand each other,” Obama continued.

Some used that comment to criticize what they see as Democrats’ transformation into a party opposed to immigration enforcement. 

Among them was conservative commentator Michael Knowles, who wrote in an op-ed published by Fox News on Thursday: “Obama’s concerns over security, assimilation, and fairness fall on deaf ears among Democrats today…Many have gone so far as to condemn physical border barriers as ‘ineffective and immoral’…Democrats have become the party of open borders.”

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Barack Obama at the UNC vs Duke Game
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Barack Obama at the UNC vs Duke Game
DURHAM, NORTH CAROLINA - FEBRUARY 20: Former President of the United States, Barack Obama, watches on during the game between the North Carolina Tar Heels and Duke Blue Devils at Cameron Indoor Stadium on February 20, 2019 in Durham, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
DURHAM, NC - FEBRUARY 20: Former U.S. President Barack Obama talks with ESPN analyst Maria Taylor while attending the game between the North Carolina Tar Heels and the Duke Blue Devils at Cameron Indoor Stadium on February 20, 2019 in Durham, North Carolina. (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images)
DURHAM, NC - FEBRUARY 20: Former U.S. President Barack Obama attends the game between the North Carolina Tar Heels and the Duke Blue Devils in the first half at Cameron Indoor Stadium on February 20, 2019 in Durham, North Carolina. (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images)
DURHAM, NORTH CAROLINA - FEBRUARY 20: Former President of the United States, Barack Obama, watches on during the game between the North Carolina Tar Heels and Duke Blue Devils at Cameron Indoor Stadium on February 20, 2019 in Durham, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Former President Barack Obama attends as North Carolina visits Duke on Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2019, at Cameron Indoor Stadium in Durham, N.C. (Robert Willett/Raleigh News & Observer/TNS via Getty Images)
DURHAM, NC - FEBRUARY 20: Former U.S. President Barack Obama (top center) attends the game between the North Carolina Tar Heels and the Duke Blue Devils in the first half at Cameron Indoor Stadium on February 20, 2019 in Durham, North Carolina. (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images)
Former President Barack Obama joins fans during an NCAA college basketball game between Duke and North Carolina in Durham, N.C., Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2019. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)
Former President Barack Obama joins fans while the national anthem is played during an NCAA college basketball game between Duke and North Carolina in Durham, N.C., Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2019. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)
Feb 20, 2019; Durham, NC, USA; former President Barack Obama looks on during the first half between the Duke Blue Devils and North Carolina Tar Heels at Cameron Indoor Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports
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