President Trump Signs Executive Order To Stop The Separation Of Migrant Families

Eloise Marshall
June 21, 2018

They chanted "shame!" repeatedly at the woman who has become the front line defender of the Trump administration's widely condemned practice of taking kids from their parents. It happened under President Barack Obama, but what's different now is the Trump administration's zero-tolerance policy, announced by U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions in April of this year.

The new order means that immigrant families will still be prosecuted for entering the country illegally, though now they will be detained together "indefinitely" at facilities that still may need to be built, as The New York Times reports.

Videos of youngsters in cages and an audiotape of wailing children have sparked anger in the United States from groups ranging from clergy to influential business leaders, as well as condemnation from overseas, including Pope Francis.

The House is expected to vote later this week on a pair of immigration proposals that are expected to address the issue of family separation but it isn't clear that either bill has the votes to pass. Trump signaled he would support a measure crafted as a compromise between centrist and conservative Republicans without explicitly endorsing the legislation, according to Reps.

Meanwhile, Democrats spent the morning calling on Trump and congressional Republicans to end the policy in speeches on the House floor.

When reporters shouted out questions, he briefly said that both Ivanka and Melanie felt "very strongly" about this, as did he.

Senior politicians suggested increasing the number of judges to speed up immigration hearings, but Mr Trump insisted it was security, not judges, that America needed. "I think anybody with a heart would feel very strongly about it", Trump said.

For now, we call on Washington to reverse the shameful zero-tolerance policy, ensure that our border control policies are effective and humane, and start thinking about what to do next. Instinctively combative and fond of chaos, Trump usually digs in on controversial policies, rather than backing down.

Trump did not say how the 2,300-plus children already taken from their families would be reunited.

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These inflection points, the results of Trump's own words or his provocative executive actions, have often created crises where none existed.

The person said the secretary believes there is little certainty that Congress will act to fix the separation issue that has been dominating news coverage and she is trying to find a solution. The bill also would allow Homeland Security to tap into a $7 billion pot of money for new or expanded residential centers to house the families in custody. "We support the administration's efforts to enforce our immigration laws, but we can not support implementation of a policy that results in the categorical forced separation of minor children from their parents".

Sen. Rob Portman (R., Ohio) called the separation policy "counter to our values" as Americans and argued that the Departments of Homeland Security and Health and Human Services aren't equipped to care for these children.

Trump has made a tough stance on immigration central to his presidency.

Cornyn was among the first Senators to agree with the White House position that Congress has a responsibility to address the issue.

"We are working on a much more comprehensive bill", Trump said.

Even if Republicans manage to pass an immigration bill through the House, which is a tall order, the fight is all but certain to fizzle in the Senate.

Cruz's bill would double the number of federal immigration judges, authorize new temporary shelters to house migrant families and limit the processing of asylum cases to no more than 14 days - a goal immigrant advocates say would be hard to meet. Leadership in the Senate and the House appear to be mulling conflicting approaches for how to handle the situation at the border - whether to go big with a broader immigration package or go narrow on a specific bill addressing family separation.

Brian Hastings, Border Patrol's acting chief of operations, told reporters that the agency's field supervisors have discretion to allow those young children to stay with their parents, if, for instance, they are breast-feeding or if US authorities believe there is a "humanitarian" reason to keep them with their family members.

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