Former Vice President Joe Biden signaled he desperately wants to distance himself from former President Barack Obama's administration deporting millions of illegal immigrants in their eight years in office and stated no deportations will happen in his first 100 days as president.
Biden was asked during the audience-free CNN Democratic presidential debate on Sunday by Univision's Ilia Calderón what he would do to not repeat mass deportations.
"Number one, I said that it took much too long to get it right. The president did get it right by [Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals] as well as making sure he tried to protect parents as well. And by the way, moving on an immigration bill as well. The fact is, we already had an immigration bill and Bernie voted against it," Biden said.
"But I will send to the desk immediately a bill that requires the access to citizenship for 11 million undocumented folks, number one. Number two, the first 100 days of my administration, no one, no one, will be deported a at all. On that point on, the only deportations that will take place are commissions of felonies in the United States of America," he added.
"So to be clear, only felons get deported and everyone else gets to stay?" Calderón asked.
"Yes. The reason is it’s about uniting families, it’s about making sure that we can both be a nation of immigrants as well as a nation that is decent," Biden replied.
While continuing to discuss the issue of immigration, both Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT) were asked if they support the act of arrested illegal immigrants being turned over to federal immigration officials.
"No," Biden responded.
"Of course not," Sanders said.