Recent reports that the U.S. government is separating children from their parents at the border with Mexico have sparked outrage over President Donald Trump’s immigration policies. In response, the Trump administration has claimed on multiple occasions that the policy is a direct result of laws put in place by the Democrats.
The president has repeatedly used liberals in Congress as scapegoats for the policy, saying that if they cooperated with Republicans to create new policies, families entering the U.S. could stay together. CNBC reported that as recently as this morning, June 18th, Trump said that the detention of children was “the Democrats’ fault.”
However, this is — quite simply — false.
Confused? (It’s okay, so were we.) Let’s break down the difference between the new Trump-era policy and the immigration law that was already in place before he took office.
As the New York Times noted, no pre-existing law requires children be taken from their parents at the border. A law against entering the country at the “improper time or place” has been in place for decades, but again, it does not require children to be taken from their families. As Vox reported, the Trump administration’s new policy is “zero-tolerance,” detaining everyone who crosses the border outside of official entry points regardless of whether they have children with them or are seeking asylum.
You can watch The View’s Sunny Hostin explain the new policy — and how it is, in fact, a NEW policy, below.
And despite Trump’s claims that Democrats have refused to negotiate new immigration laws, USA Today reported today, June 18th, that all Senate Democrats have signed on to sponsor the “Keeping Families Together Act,” which will prevent children and parents from being split up at the border.
According to NPR, in the span of six weeks between mid-April and May 31st, 2,000 children were detained at the border. The longer this policy is in place, the more families will be ripped apart. It’s time for the administration to stop deflecting blame and take action.
If you feel strongly about this issue, contact your representatives today.