First lady Melania Trump "hates" to see families separated

Hugh Fox
June 22, 2018

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For both, it was an unusual entry into a fierce political debate. "Zero tolerance, it's a crime to come across illegally, and children get separated, ".

At a space event later, Trump discussed immigration and again blamed Democrats for failing to sign on to Republican immigration proposals.

"The President is very good at imagery", Scaramucci said. The June 16-19 poll found that 28 percent of people polled supported the policy, while 57 percent opposed it and the remaining 15 percent said they did not know. Children would be separated from adults who are not their parent or who have serious criminal records, or if there is evidence of abuse or trafficking. "No more free passes, no more get out of jail free cards".

Almost 2,000 children were separated from their families over a six-week period in April and May after Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced a new "zero-tolerance" policy that refers all cases of illegal entry for criminal prosecution. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, which often wades into politics with its opposition to abortion rights and same-sex marriage, has decried the administration, as have mainline Protestant churches, the Mormon Church and evangelical leaders.

With the sound of a young child crying in the background, the top Democrat on the House of Representatives Judiciary Committee, Jerrold Nadler, broke from traditional protocol and started reading from a statement, saying: "These children are not animals".

Several groups of lawmakers toured a nearby facility in Brownsville, Texas, that houses hundreds of immigrant children. "Papa! Papa!" one child is heard weeping in an audio file that was first reported by the non-profit ProPublica and later provided to The Associated Press.

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TRUMP IMMIGRATION-HOW WE GOT HERE - A look at how a change in U.S. policy resulted in a humanitarian crisis at the border involving some 2,000 children in just six weeks.

"The United States will not be a migrant camp and it will not be a refugee holding facility", he declared. "Not on my watch".

Senator Chuck Schumer, the Democratic leader from NY, is adamant that Trump can end the family separations on his own and that legislation is not needed. "If we build the wall, if we pass legislation to end the lawlessness, we won't face these bad choices".

But on Capitol Hill, executive action is not the same as a legislative fix.

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas announced late Monday that he was introducing emergency legislation meant to keep immigrant families together. Rep. Luis Gutierrez, D-Ill., said Americans were "standing up for children, standing up for those who are in need". "It's a concept it seems everybody is jumping on board", he said.

The president has sought to link an end to the family separations to passage of a wider bill on immigration, which would include funding for his long-sought border wall with Mexico, prompting Democrats to accuse him of using children as hostages.

But the White House signalled it would oppose any narrow fix aimed exclusively at addressing the plight of children separated from their parents under the immigration crackdown.

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"It's incredible how people are surprised that he's keeping the promises he made on the campaign trail now", said Trump political adviser Bill Stepien. But now, Aldrete said, "Trump has done it for us". "We don't want to tinker with just part of it".

Trump's immigration standoff comes as he escalates his nationalist trade moves, imposing new tariffs on imports and threating more.

Underscoring the sensitivity of the issue, language curbing the taking of immigrant children from parents held in custody will be added to the House's conservative immigration bill, a House GOP aide said Monday, A similar provision is already in a compromise GOP immigration measure between party conservatives and moderates, with the House expected to vote on both late this week.

Senate Democrats have rallied behind a bill from Sen. He didn't mention Trump, but said the border policy "is antithetical to the America I grew up in". Falsely blaming Democrats, Trump calls on Congress to change immigration laws - but the prospects for election-year legislation are slim.

The Rev. Franklin Graham, a longtime Trump ally, called the policy "disgraceful". He said it was "the only solution to the border crisis".

At least one Democrat running in a conservative-leaning House district in North Carolina combined Law's advice with the words of another Republican critic: former first lady Laura Bush. Kansas GOP Sen. Pat Roberts said he is "against using parental separation as a deterrent to illegal immigration". AP writers Alan Fram, Ken Thomas, Jill Colvin and Catherine Lucey in Washington, Nick Riccardi in Denver and Nomaan Merchant in McAllen, Texas, contributed.

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