Democratic incumbent Sen. Michael Bennet (Colo.) said he did not know what "open borders" means during a debate against Republican challenger Darryl Glenn Tuesday evening.
Bennet was asked about remarks made by Hillary Clinton during a paid speech delivered to the Brazilian bank Banco Itau in 2013, where the presidential nominee advocated for "open borders."
"I don’t know what that means, if you can define it for me, I would be happy to answer," Bennet said.
KUSA 9 Anchor Kyle Clark told Bennet, "It was [Hillary Clinton’s] quote that her dream is in the hemisphere ‘open borders and open trade.’"
"I don’t know what that means," Bennet said.
This is not the first time a democratic candidate has claimed ignorance on immigration, a major issue in the presidential campaign. Patty Judge, who is challenging Sen. Chuck Grassley in Iowa, said she did not know what a sanctuary city is.
Hillary Clinton has not advocated in public for open borders, though she has called for a continuation of immigration policies under President Obama, "comprehensive immigration reform," and amnesty for illegal immigrants currently living in the United States.
"My dream is a hemispheric common market, with open trade and open borders, some time in the future with energy that is as green and sustainable as we can get it, powering growth and opportunity for every person in the hemisphere," Clinton said in the closed door speech. "We have to resist, protectionism, other kinds of barriers to market access."
Clinton’s remarks were revealed in hacked emails posted by Wikileaks. The director of national intelligence and the Department of Homeland Security have accused "Russia’s senior-most officials" of hacking and leaking emails posted to Wikiileaks and other sites in order to influence the 2016 election.