Trump Defiant as Border Crisis Escalates

“As he prepared to visit Capitol Hill, President Trump continued to insist Tuesday that Congress produce comprehensive immigration legislation, while anxious Republicans explored a narrower fix to the administration’s policy of separating migrant children from their parents,” the Washington Post reports.

“The message came as Trump was scheduled to visit Republican lawmakers on Capitol Hill on Tuesday evening to lobby them on immigration legislation that would provide billions of dollars for his long-sought border wall and other security priorities.”

“Amid a public outcry, Republicans are also planning to defy the White House by crafting legislation to ease the effects of the administration policy of dividing families.”

Meanwhile, Trump doubled down on Twitter claiming migrants are threatening to “infest” America.

U.S. Officials Likely Lost Track of 6,000 Kids

“The Trump administration has likely lost track of nearly 6,000 unaccompanied migrant children, thousands more than lawmakers were alerted to last month,” according to a McClatchy review of federal data.

“Federal officials acknowledged last month that nearly 1,500 unaccompanied minors arrived on the southern border alone without their parents and were placed with sponsors who did not keep in touch with federal officials, but those numbers were only a snapshot of a three- month period during the last fiscal year.”

Trump Wants to Rally GOP Base Over Immigration

“As Republicans try to keep their midterm election strategy focused on the economy, tax cuts and falling unemployment, President Trump sent his clearest signal yet on Monday that he intends to make divisive, racially charged issues like immigration central going into the campaign season,” the New York Times reports.

“Facing bipartisan criticism over his administration’s family separation practice on the border, Mr. Trump renewed the sort of bald and demagogic attacks on undocumented immigrants that worked well for him politically in his 2016 presidential campaign.”

Some Migrant Family Separations Are Permanent

Jon Sandweg, the former head of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, told NBC News that migrant parents separated from their children at the border are sometimes unable to relocate their child and remain permanently separated.

“While a parent can quickly move from detention to deportation, a child’s case for asylum or deportation may not be heard by a judge for several years because deporting a child is a lower priority for the courts, Sandweg explained.”

“As a result, parents may find themselves back in their home countries struggling to find their children. Many do not have access to legal counsel or understand the U.S. immigration or judicial systems.”

Trump Administration Lying About Separation Policy

Washington Post: “Our analysis finds the doublespeak coming from President Trump and top administration officials on this issue is breathtaking, not only because of the sheer audacity of these claims but also because they keep being repeated without evidence.”

“Immigrant families are being separated at the border not because of Democrats and not because some law forces this result, as Trump insists. They’re being separated because the Trump administration, under its zero-tolerance policy, is choosing to prosecute border-crossing adults for any offenses.”

Trump Loses Temper Over Border Wall Funding

Politico: “In a private meeting regarding the wall Monday, Trump fumed to senators and his own staff about the $1.6 billion the Senate is planning to send him this fall, according to two people familiar with the meeting. Trump wants the full $25 billion upfront and doesn’t understand why Congress is going to supply him funds in a piecemeal fashion — even though that’s how the spending process typically works.”

”The president said at the meeting that if Congress doesn’t give him the resources he needs for border security, he will shut down the government in September, according to one of the people familiar with the meeting. He did not give a specific number, but has been fixated on getting the $25 billion in a lump sum.”

Trump Isn’t Making It Easier for European Allies

New York Times: “With a rift over migrants bringing German politics to a boil, the country’s feuding leaders scraped together a truce Monday on an issue that threatens to topple the fragile government. Then President Trump stepped in. ‘The people of Germany are turning against their leadership as migration is rocking the already tenuous Berlin coalition,’ Mr. Trump said on Twitter, before falsely claiming that crime in Germany had risen because of immigration.”

“The migrant issue is a political wildfire in Europe. It has breathed new life into populist movements from Hungary to Austria to Italy. In Italy, the newly formed government coalition rose to power in part by drawing on anger about migration. It introduced its immigration policy last week by turning away a boat carrying more than 600 migrants from Africa. These forces are making it harder for European centrists to hold onto power — and as his comments made clear Monday, Mr. Trump is not making it any easier for the United States’ longtime partners.”

What Scripture Really Says About Dividing Families

The Economist: “American commentators both religious and secular have been digging deep into the Bible over the past week. They have been searching for answers to the claim by Jeff Sessions, the attorney-general, that a new practice of separating parents and children at the Mexican border is founded in holy writ.”

“People who really want to raise the stakes in this scriptural to-and-fro might consider turning to a verse in Matthew’s Gospel which warns of the dire consequences that may befall anybody who does spiritual harm to children.”

If anyone causes one of these little ones…to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.

The Political Fringe Is Now In Power

“Jeff Sessions and Stephen Miller spent years on the political fringe in the nation’s capital as high-decibel immigration hard-liners, always warning about the dangers of open borders but rarely in a position to affect law or policy,” the New York Times reports.

“Now, Mr. Sessions, the attorney general and former senator from Alabama, and Mr. Miller, the president’s top policy adviser and former Senate aide to Mr. Sessions, have moved from the edges of the immigration debate to its red-hot center. Powerful like never before, the two are the driving force behind President Trump’s policy that has led thousands of children to be separated from their parents at the nation’s southern border.”

Using Children for Political Leverage Is Un-American

Financial Times: “Might some immigrants, desperate to cross the border, bring children with them as — to speak figuratively — ‘human shields’, hoping that the presence of minors will protect them from arrest? This is conceivable. But even then the innocence of the children would remain a stubborn fact. Either it is acceptable for the US government to use children as leverage to further its policy goals, or it is not.”

“Mr Trump and his inner circle have suggested that the separation of families at the border might be stopped if Congress acted on new immigration laws. But neither of the bills currently before Congress address the issue directly. And even if they did, the moral proposition would be the same: Mr Trump is using children for political leverage.”

What Separation from Parents Does to Children

Washington Post: “This is what happens inside children when they are forcibly separated from their parents.”

“Their heart rate goes up. Their body releases a flood of stress hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline. Those stress hormones can start killing off dendrites — the little branches in brain cells that transmit mes­sages. In time, the stress can start killing off neurons and — especially in young children — wreaking dramatic and long-term damage, both psychologically and to the physical structure of the brain.”

Said Harvard Medical School professor Charles Nelson: “The effect is catastrophic. There’s so much research on this that if people paid attention at all to the science, they would never do this.”

Trump Plans Immigration Crackdown Before Midterms

“Top aides to President Trump are planning additional crackdowns on immigration before the November midterms, despite a growing backlash over the administration’s move to separate migrant children from parents at the border,” Politico reports.

“Senior policy adviser Stephen Miller and a team of officials from the Justice Department, Department of Labor, Department of Homeland Security, and the Office of Management and Budget have been quietly meeting for months to find ways to use executive authority and under-the-radar rule changes to strengthen hard-line U.S. immigration policies.”

Big Majority Oppose Trump’s Separation Policy

A new Quinnipiac poll finds that American voters oppose the policy of separating children and parents when families illegally cross the border into America by a wide margin, 66% to 27%.

However, Republican voters support the separation policy 55% to 35%, the only listed party, gender, education, age or racial group to support it.

American voters also support 79% to 15% allowing immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children, so-called “Dreamers,” to remain and ultimately to apply for citizenship.

A new CNN poll finds 67% of Americans opposed the policy while just 28% approve.