Ahead of his 2020 re-election campaign launch tonight, Trump vowed Monday to begin the removal of millions of undocumented immigrants.
“Next week ICE will begin the process of removing the millions of illegal aliens who have illicitly found their way into the United States,” Trump wrote in a tweet. “They will be removed as fast as they come in.”
Trump’s promise — with Stephen Miller as the architect of the plan — to deport millions of undocumented immigrants comes amid a humantarian crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border, where thousands of migrants fleeing violence and poverty are arriving to seek asylum.
In May, 133,000 migrants were arrested or surrendered to border agents, representing about a 32 percent increase from the previous month.
The majority of those migrants have entered through El Paso and the Rio Grande Valley. In El Paso, conditions for migrants have gotten so bad hundreds of are being held in an outdoor detention camp under a bridge.
Border Patrol in the Rio Grande Valley said more than 8,000 undocumented migrants are in custody, more than three times the region’s intended capacity.
Responding to Trump directly on Twitter, presidential hopeful and former El Paso congressman Beto O’Rourke told the president, “Militarizing and raiding our communities makes us less, not more, safe.”
Texans are split 49 to 45 in their approval of Trump’s handling of immigration and border security issues, according to the latest University of Texas-Texas Tribune poll.
The Washington Post reported Tuesday that “[t]he family arrest plan has been considered even more sensitive than a typical operation because children are involved, and Homeland Security officials retain significant concerns that families will be inadvertently separated by the operation, especially because parents in some households have deportation orders but their children — some of whom are U.S. citizens — might not.”
Fernando covers Texas politics and government at the Texas Signal. Before joining the Signal, Fernando spent two years at the Houston Chronicle and previously interned at Houston’s NPR station News 88.7. He is a graduate of the University of Houston, Jack J. Valenti School of Communication, and enjoys reading, highlighting things, and arguing on social media. You can follow him on Twitter at @fernramirez93 or email at email@example.com