President Donald Trump is blaming democrats for splitting families at the border.
Trump willing to end draconian border policy which would result in the separation of parents from their children. He is acting in opposition to a statement made by Attorney General Jeff Sessions earlier this month.
He said “Put pressure on the Democrats to end the horrible law that separates children from there parents once they cross the Border into the U.S. Catch and Release, Lottery and Chain must also go with it and we MUST continue building the WALL! DEMOCRATS ARE PROTECTING MS-13 THUGS.”
Sessions announced a “zero-tolerance” policy regarding the enforcement of undocumented immigrants who are found in violation of border control laws. “If you cross the border unlawfully, then we will prosecute you. It’s that simple,” the AG said. “If you smuggle illegal aliens across our border, then we will prosecute you. If you are smuggling a child, then we will prosecute you and that child may be separated from you as required by law.”
“We’re here to send a message to the world that we are not going to let the country be overwhelmed,” Sessions continued. “People are not going to caravan or otherwise stampede our border. We need legality and integrity in our immigration system.”
A week later, Trump’s Chief of Staff, John Kelly, appeared to make public appearances in order to defend the announcement of the new guidelines from the DoJ. In an interview with NPR, Kelly said that he didn’t consider such a policy “cruel.” Instead, he described it instead as an effective deterrent for those thinking of crossing the border illegally.
“It could be a tough deterrent — would be a tough deterrent,” Kelly said. “A much faster turnaround on asylum seekers.”
NPR’s correspondent then asked if such a policy was cruel, to which the Chief of Staff replied:
“I wouldn’t put it quite that way. The children will be taken care of — put into foster care or whatever. But the big point is they elected to come illegally into the United States and this is a technique that no one hopes will be used extensively or for very long.”
Some fact-checkers have determined that Trump’s claim is false, writing that it is left to the discretion of the prosecutor (in cases regarding illegal immigration) whether or not to separate parents from their children. If a parent is convicted of a crime and detained, they are, in effect, “separated.” The aggressive policy enacted by Jeff Sessions merely results in many more parents being detained.
Thomas Homan, the acting director of ICE, actually emphasized this aspect of the DoJ guidelines at a press conference where Sessions made his original announcement regarding “zero-tolerance.”
“I want to be clear. DHS does not have a blanket policy on separating families as a deterrent,” the ICE director said. “Every law enforcement agency in this country separates parents from children when they’re arrested for a crime. There is no new policy. This has always been the policy. Now, you will see more prosecutions because of the Attorney General’s commitment to zero tolerance.”