Trump whips up immigration storm over children

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Michelle Brane, director of the Migrant Rights and Justice program at the Women's Refugee Commission, said in a statement: "Family separation is NOT required by any law, this is a Trump administration policy clearly created to punish parents, who are just trying to get their children to safety". Republican leadership has consistently told conservatives pushing the bill that it would not have almost enough Republican votes to pass.

The government's apparent disinclination or inability to find those children is an ill omen for thousands more who could be funneled to a similar fate under the Trump administration's enforcement drive.

"It's perfectly legal for parents and children fleeing horrific violence and risky situations to apply for asylum in the U.S. They and their children deserve protection under the law, not inhumane treatment", says David Leopold, former president of the American Immigration Lawyers Association.

"Plus, we have the problem of people fraudulently claiming to be parents when, in fact, they're not", he added, saying the agreement would give the agency better tools to check sponsors' backgrounds and verify their identities.

This spring, the number of migrants arrested for crossing the border has jumped, topping 50,000 for the past two months, leaving President Trump fuming at Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and prompting an order to "close" the border.

"We can imagine a situation where the kids do stay in custody longer because there's no one then to release them to". It is a "deliberate policy to separate children from their parents at the border", Jennifer Podkul, KIND policy director, said at a second press briefing Tuesday.

Though President Trump has blamed the new policy on a law passed by Democrats, experts say no such law exists.

"What's happened is the exception to the rule is now becoming the rule", said Young, who said prosecutions under Obama were far more selective. Chief of Staff John F. Kelly has described family separation as an unpalatable but necessary deterrent to illegal migration.

Critics of Trump's policies say the President is willfully confusing the issue and exploiting the welfare of children as the administration drives home its zero tolerance immigration policy. "If you don't like that, then don't smuggle children over our border".

Trump is right to want to get a handle on the border. An immigrant from Mali, in France with dubious papers, clambered up four stories of a Parisian building in defiance of gravity to rescue a small child who was dangling from a balcony.

To do so, Miller said, Congress needs to pass laws to increase the number of immigration detention centers, so families can be incarcerated together as they await deportation. So President Trump did what he always does when facing backlash for using children (remember the "dreamers" and children's health insurance?) as a bargaining chip: Blame the Dems. The question is: Are we ever going to do something about it? "DEMOCRATS ARE PROTECTING MS-13 THUGS", Trump tweeted, highlighting the most divisive aspects on a debate that has been rocking United States politics for more than a decade. He has hyperbolically elevated a Latino gang, MS-13, to the greatest threat since al-Qaida. "We need to change the law so that families arriving illegally can be sent home swiftly".

Trump foes made their own missteps in the debate.

Here's what "lost" means: When children come to the border unaccompanied, they are placed in a shelter or with a sponsor.

Walter Shapiro, a Roll Call columnist since 2015, has covered the last 10 presidential campaigns.

Alan Gomez, immigration reporter for USA Today.

But here's the part Trump apologists neglect to mention: The government is keeping immigrant families forcibly separated even after criminal proceedings are over and the parents get released from jail.

The rebellious lawmakers are attempting to force a vote against the House GOP leadership's wishes on a set of immigration bills. The policy sets criminal penalties for individuals trying to cross the border, among other punitive measures.

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