Trump official: Statue of Liberty poem refers to Europeans

Politics
Liberty Crown_1529257697914

In this June 2, 2009 photo, the Statue of Liberty is seen in New York harbor. The crown is set to open July 4 after being closed since shortly after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The acting director of Citizenship and Immigration Services says the inscription on the Statue of Liberty welcoming immigrants into the country is about “people coming from Europe.”

Ken Cuccinelli said Tuesday on CNN that the poem referred to Europeans coming from “class-based societies where people were considered wretched if they weren’t in the right class.”

His comment came a day after the Trump administration announced it would seek to deny green cards to migrants who use public assistance.

Cuccinelli was asked earlier Tuesday on NPR whether the words “give me your tired, your poor” were part of the American ethos. Cuccinelli responded: “They certainly are. Give me your tired and your poor who can stand on their own two feet and who will not become a public charge.”

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