Published: Sat, June 23, 2018
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

Trump backs down on migrant policy

Trump backs down on migrant policy

Pressure also grew Tuesday night after Trump administration officials have reportedly been sending babies and other young children forcibly separated from their parents at U.S. -Mexico border to at least three "tender age" shelters in South Texas.

HHS Secretary Alex Azar told Fox News' "Special Report" that before families can be reunited, "we're going to have to see how the implementation of the executive order goes". "I didn't like the sight or the feeling of families being separated". In April, the U.S. attorney general announced a "zero-tolerance" policy to criminally charge and jail undocumented border crossers. Depending on the availability of space, his order does not indicate whether children will continue to remain separated from their parents while additional facilities are being built. "He's not a monster as he's being framed by the media and by the left", said Trandem, who was a delegate at the 2016 Republican convention where Trump clinched the nomination for president. The administration's policy threatened lawmakers seeking reelection in the upcoming midterm elections in November.

The president's abrupt about-face laid bare the administration's capricious use of executive power as it presses forward with a crackdown on illegal immigration, first ensnaring children in its "zero tolerance" prosecution policy, then coming up with a "stopgap" reprieve in the face of global condemnation.

During the course of the week, governors of the US states of Colorado, Maryland, Rhode Island and NY ordered their state assets such as National Guard personnel or equipment be refrained from being used to support the Trump administration's mission to secure the US-Mexico border.

"It's about keeping families together", Trump told reporters at the White House, after signing an executive order Wednesday that he said would end the practice.

However, the effort to keep families united would be accomplished in a way that does not seem like a humane solution.

Trump and other administration officials, including Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, defended the policy up to the last minute, insisting that they enacted it in part because of a 2015 court order that cited a 1997 settlement known as the Flores agreement that says children can not be held in long-term detention, even with their parents.

It has been a bad thing for the families torn apart, and some of them, it is becoming frighteningly clear, may never recover, may never be brought back together again.

The other, a slightly less severe measure supported by the House leadership, would also restrict legal immigration, but wouldn't require E-Verify and provides a path to citizenship for dreamers.

Trump's order is already facing stiff resistance from lawmakers and may face an uphill court battle.


A federal appeals court has interpreted the Flores agreement to allow immigration officials to detain families for only 20 days.

"What President Trump did today was adopted a policy that expressly violates a federal court holding".

The president said he was grappling with the dilemma of enforcing border security without mistreating children, who are often mistreated by smugglers.

Trump's order, drafted by Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, directs her department to keep families together after they are detained for illegal border-crossing.

"There will not be a grandfathering of existing cases", Wolfe said, according to The New York Times.

A Justice Department official was unable to clarify whether family separations would end immediately or when and how families now separated would be reunited.

That came in the form of the executive order, which Justice Department lawyers had drafted in the days earlier in case the president should want that option. "Every child is entitled to basic human rights".

British Prime Minister Theresa May, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, the Council of Europe and Pope Francis all took issue with the "zero tolerance" policy. He called on the administration to end the policy and stop criminalizing asylum seekers. If neither branch acts within 20 days, newly detained families may again be separated. Those defections - almost 1 in 5 GOP lawmakers - underscored the party's chasm over immigration and the election-year pressures Republicans face to stay true to districts that range from staunchly conservative to pro-immigrant.

But the volume of condemnation on breaking up families, from inside and outside the White House, finally overwhelmed Trump.

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