In one of the strongest legal steps the Trump administration has taken against the illegal immigration surge, the Department of Homeland Security announced Wednesday that they were introducing a new regulation that will replace the court-mandated Flores Settlement. This settlement, which came down in 1997, opened the door for the catch-and-release policies that illegal aliens have been taking advantage of ever since. A tree that has sprouted more than a million rotten leaves, the Flores decree forces the federal government to remove migrant children from detention facilities within 20 days.
Under Trump’s new policy (which is certain to be challenged in court by Democrats and immigration activists), migrant families will be detained together until an immigration judge can approve or reject their case for staying in the country.
“President Trump has made it clear that he’s going to secure America’s border at all cost and this rule plays a vital role in the strategy to restore the integrity to our immigration system and our national security,” an administration official said in an interview with the Washington Times.
At a press conference to announce the change, Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan said the administration was moving forward with the rule to protect migrant children.
“No child should be a pawn in a scheme to manipulate our immigration system,” McAleenan said. “This action by the administration is just one part of our overall effort, but it’s an essential one.”
What McAleenan is getting at, of course, is the fact that thousands of migrants are intentionally putting their children into harm’s way, because they know that our country’s lenient laws on migrant detention will allow them to all go free soon enough. Not to mention the fact that Border Patrol authorities are much more likely to let in “families” than adults by themselves. Even if, in many cases, these children don’t actually belong to the people carrying them across the border.
To no one’s surprise, the American Civil Liberties Union has already threatened to challenge the regulation.
“This is yet another cruel attack on children, who the Trump administration has targeted again and again with its anti-immigrant policies,” said the ACLU. “The government should not be jailing kids, and certainly shouldn’t be seeking to put more kids in jail for longer. Congress must not fund this.”
We agree – the government should not be jailing kids. And the faster we can enact policies and solutions that will keep illegal immigrants on THEIR side of the border, the faster we can stop doing so.
If only groups like the ACLU had the slightest interest in helping our country achieve that goal.