'Not Actually Part of the Original': Trump Aide Dismisses Statue of Liberty 'Huddled Masses' Poem - NBC Bay Area
President Donald Trump

President Donald Trump

The latest news on President Donald Trump's presidency

'Not Actually Part of the Original': Trump Aide Dismisses Statue of Liberty 'Huddled Masses' Poem

Stephen Miller's comment prompted ridicule on social media and angry responses from immigrant rights advocates

    Winter Olympics PyeongChang 2018 Medal Count
    Country
    Total
    1
    Norway
    14141139
    2
    Germany
    1410731
    3
    Canada
    1181029
    processing...

    NEWSLETTERS

    WH, CNN Reporter Argue Over Proposed Immigration Bill

    Senior advisor Stephen Miller sparred with CNN's Jim Acosta during a press briefing on Wednesday in a heated debate over President Donald Trump's proposed immigration bill that looks to only take in English-speaking, highly skilled workers. Miller called it a "compassionate" bill, citing African Americans as a group that the bill was written to help, with Acosta calling the proposal "racist." (Published Wednesday, Aug. 2, 2017)

    A poem at the Statue of Liberty that is a national symbol for the country's embrace of immigrants became the topic of a rancorous exchange Wednesday at a White House news conference to announce President Donald Trump's push for immigration reform.

    Senior White House aide Stephen Miller told reporters the poem written by Emma Lazarus about the "huddled masses" is not part of the original Statue of Liberty.

    Miller said the statue is a "symbol of American liberty lighting the world" and suggested it had little to do with immigrants.

    Miller's comment prompted ridicule on social media and angry responses from immigrant rights advocates. But it struck a chord with white nationalists, who tweeted approval. 

    Democrats Release Memo to Counter GOP's FBI Claims

    [NATL-NY] Democrats Release Memo to Counter GOP's FBI Claims

    A redacted, declassified memo released by Democrats on the House intelligence committee Saturday aims to counter a narrative that Republicans on the committee have pushed for months — that the FBI and Justice Department conspired against President Donald Trump during his presidential campaign, abusing a secret surveillance process to spy on one of his operatives in its Russia investigation. Checkey Beckford reports.

    (Published 3 hours ago)

    Miller was responding to a question from CNN reporter Jim Acosta asking if the Trump administration's new merit-based green card proposal was keeping with U.S. tradition.

    The reporter read a line of the Lazarus sonnet, "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses."

    "The poem you were referring to was added later," Miller said. "It's not actually part of the original Statue of Liberty."

    The National Park Service says Lazarus' sonnet depicts the statue "as the 'Mother of Exiles:' a symbol of immigration and opportunity — symbols associated with the Statue of Liberty today."

    The statue was a gift from France commemorating its alliance with the United States during the American Revolution. Edouard de Laboulaye, a French political thinker and abolitionist, proposed the idea of the statue and made sure broken shackles and chains were at the right foot of the statue.

    Writers and authors later asked Emma Lazarus, a poet and descendant of Jewish immigrants, to write a sonnet to be sold at an auction to raise money for a pedestal to hold the Statue of Liberty.

    Trump Echoes NRA Chief Wayne LaPierre Following Florida Shootings

    [NATL] Trump Echoes NRA Chief Wayne LaPierre Following Florida Shootings

    Hours after NRA chief Wayne LaPierre delivered his first remarks following the shootings in Florida, President Donald Trump used similar language in talking about what should be done.

    (Published Friday, Feb. 23, 2018)

    She wrote "The New Colossus" on Nov. 2, 1883, inspired by the plight of immigrants and refugees and her own experiences. The poem appeared in Joseph Pulitzer's New York World and The New York Times.

    She died four years later, and the poem eventually faded from public memory.

    In 1901, a Lazarus friend, Georgina Schuyler, found a book containing the poem and started an effort to resurrect the work. Her words were eventually inscribed on a plaque and placed on the statue's pedestal.

    The poem reads:

    "Give me your tired, your poor,

    Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,

    Trump ‘Thinking About’ Pulling ICE From California

    [NATL] Trump ‘Thinking About’ Pulling ICE From California

    President Donald Trump said he’s thinking about removing Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents out of California because of his growing frustration with the state’s “lousy management job” on immigration.

    (Published Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018)

    The wretched refuse of your teeming shore."

    The Statue of Liberty and nearby Ellis Island have since become welcoming symbols for immigrants and refugees coming to the United States.

    It draws thousands of visitors each day.

    White nationalists have tried to separate the Statue of Liberty from Lazarus’ poem, often emphasizing that Lazarus was Jewish.

    Richard Spencer for example tweeted in January: “It’s offensive that such a beautiful, inspiring statue was ever associated with ugliness, weakness, and deformity.”