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Tim Ryan: Migrants trying to enter US 'should at least ring the doorbell'

Tim Ryan: Migrants trying to enter US 'should at least ring the doorbell'
© CNN

Rep. Tim RyanTimothy (Tim) RyanCapitol officer claims MAGA hat was part of ruse to rescue colleagues: report Tim Ryan, Rosa DeLauro giving free coffee and donuts to National Guard stationed at Capitol Agency IGs to probe breakdown in response to Capitol riots MORE (D-Ohio) said migrants trying to enter the U.S. "should at least ring the doorbell" during Tuesday's Democratic presidential debate, amid an exchange over the decriminalization of illegal border crossings.

The candidates were discussing a proposal put forth in the first round of debates by former Obama Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro, who said he would eliminate the statute that makes it a crime to cross into the United States without permission.

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The 10 candidates in Tuesday's debate were evenly split on the idea, which Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenBudowsky: Democracy won, Trump lost, President Biden inaugurated Top Senate Democrat backs waiver for Biden Pentagon nominee Consumer bureau director resigns after Biden's inauguration MORE (D-Mass.) said President TrumpDonald TrumpClinton, Bush, Obama reflect on peaceful transition of power on Biden's Inauguration Day Arizona Republican's brothers say he is 'at least partially to blame' for Capitol violence Biden reverses Trump's freeze on .4 billion in funds MORE is using "to rip families apart."

The Trump administration used the criminal statute in question as the basis for its zero tolerance program, which resulted in more than 2,000 children being separated from their parents.

But Ryan is in the camp of Democrats who believe removing the statute would entice further illegal immigration, adding that immigrants should be respectful of American laws and "at least ring the doorbell."