Published: Thu, June 21, 2018
People | By Neil Grant

Republican leaders, Trump leaders strain for migrant-kids solution


Trump announced his decision Wednesday during a meeting at the White House with lawmakers as global condemnation of the family separation policy intensified and the backlash in Congress grew.

The order directs other agencies, including the Pentagon, to take steps to find places to house family units.

California leaders argued that the president's order traded one dehumanizing system for another, while doing nothing to reunite the thousands of kids who've been separated with their parents.

The White House may run into legal difficulties if the executive order requires families to be held intact together indefinitely since a federal consent decree known as the Flores settlement says children must be released after 20 days.

Also playing a role in his turnaround: First lady Melania Trump.

"We have a House that is getting ready to finalize an immigration package that they're going to brief me on later, and then I'm going to make changes to it", Trump said, without providing details about what he plans to change.

Nielsen travelled to Capitol Hill Wednesday afternoon to brief lawmakers. And members on the fence over pending immigration legislation headed to the White House to meet with Trump.

Trump had tweeted earlier Wednesday, "It's the Democrats fault, they won't give us the votes needed to pass good immigration legislation".

"They don't care about crime and want illegal immigrants, no matter how bad they may be, to pour into and infest our country, like MS-13".

The move has resulted in the USA government sending thousands of children to holding camps around the country, images of which have sparked worldwide outrage, even from within Trump's own party.

Indications of a potential shift in administration thinking came an hour after Speaker Paul Ryan said the House would vote Thursday on a compromise between conservative and Republican senators that would address the issue of family separations.

The lack of a reunification protocol could lead to "permanent separation" of parent and child, he said. "It's about keeping families together, while at the same time being sure we have a very powerful, very strong border", Trump said.

Ryan declined to say whether the president would commit to an immediate moratorium on family separation, but hinted that the administration is exploring "interim measures".

Planning at the Justice Department had been underway over the past several days to provide the president with options on the growing crisis, said the official, who, like others, spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the effort before its official announcement.

This means that Congress is still under pressure to reach a more lasting solution, and President Trump said that the administration would still be working with Congress to fix the problem. The official did not know what prompted Trump to change course. Children can't be jailed with their parents. "Those who are responsible are the immigrant parents and the politicians who encourage them to come".

In the House, GOP leaders scrambled Tuesday to produce a revised version of the broader immigration bill that would keep children in detention longer than now permitted - but with their parents. "The government has been faced with the choice of either splitting the family by detaining the parent and releasing the kid, or just letting the parent go too". That settlement, reached in 1997, required the government to limit the time it kept unaccompanied minors in detention, and to keep them in the least restrictive setting possible.

Like this: