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Trump suggests separation of families at border is a negotiating tool

Trump suggests separation of families at border is a negotiating tool

The Trump administration's decision to separate children from their families as a way to curb illegal immigration is adding fuel to an already fiery debate over immigration.

An anonymous White House official told The Washington Post this week that Trump is hoping to use the harsh policy as leverage to force Democrats to cave to his other immigration demands, like funding a border wall and lessening the amount of people allowed to immigrate to the USA legally.

Kellyanne Conway tells NBC's "Meet the Press" that "nobody likes" pulling apart families. Prior procedure had limited prosecution for many family entrants, in part because regulations prohibit detaining children with their parents since the children are not charged with a crime and the parents are. Republican Sens. Jeff Flake of Arizona and Susan Collins of ME sent a letter to the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Health and Human Services demanding answers about the practice. The administration has decided "to separate children from their parents to try to send a message that if you cross the border with children, your children are going to be ripped away from you", Senator Susan Collins told CBS television's "Face the Nation".

A group of House Democrats converged on an immigration detention facility in New Jersey on Sunday, days before a planned vote by House Republicans next week. The House is expected to vote this week on a bill pushed by conservatives that may not have enough support to pass, and a compromise measure that includes key proposals supported by the president. "It won't be", he said at the White House.

"Trump claims Democrats are to blame for families being broken up".

To Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., the administration is "using the grief, the tears, the pain of these kids as mortar to build our wall".




Republican criticism Some of Trump's fellow Republicans also have said the policy must end. "Using children, young children, as political foils is abhorrent", said Sen Jack Reed, D-Rhode Island.

Similarly, First Lady Melania Trump released a statement saying "she believes we need to be a country that follows all laws, but also a country that governs with heart".

In her rare intervention, Melania Trump said she "hates to see children separated from their families and hopes both sides of the aisle [Republicans and Democrats in Congress] can finally come together to achieve successful immigration reform".

The visit comes two days after the Department of Homeland Security confirmed the United States government has separated almost 2,000 children from parents at the border since implementing a policy that results in such family separations. In a guest column for the Washington Post, she compared the separation of the children to the internment camps for Japanese-Americans in World War II. "He's put the full weight of his office behind it". This is why we need more Republicans elected in November. Period. "For those seeking asylum at ports of entry, we have continued the policy from previous dministrations and will only separate if the child is in danger, there is no custodial relationship between "family" members, or if the adult has broken a law", she wrote on Twitter.

"We ran on a policy, very simply, stop mass illegal immigration and limit legal immigration, get our sovereignty back, and to help our workers, OK?"

However, the Justice Department announced it would prosecute all of the cases referred to it at the beginning of April. "Zero tolerance, it's a crime to come across illegally, and children get separated, ". Cardinal Timothy Dolan, a prominent Catholic leader in the United States, said Friday there is no biblical defense for separating families, condemning the practice as "unjust" and "un-American".

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