In a roundtable meeting with California lawmakers and law enforcement officials, President Trump said that immigrants in sanctuary cities are "animals."
During the Wednesday meeting, which was intended to discuss sanctuary policies in California that protect some immigrants from deportation, Trump criticized immigrants who commit crimes and applauded officials who said the policies were dangerous to their communities.
"These aren't people. These are animals," said Trump, referring to undocumented immigrants who are deported from sanctuary cities. Trump additionally said that the U.S. has "the dumbest laws on immigration in the world," blaming Democrats for creating unfair policies. "We have to break up families," he said, referring to a policy that separates parents and children who cross the border illegally. "The Democrats gave us that law."
— CSPAN (@cspan) May 16, 2018
California officials shared anecdotes of violence that they attributed to sanctuary laws. Trump agreed that local law enforcement should have more authority to prosecute immigrants. "We cannot let this butchery happen in America," he said. Summer Meza
The Department of Homeland Security on Friday ended a program that granted Temporary Protected Status to 57,000 Hondurans, reports McClatchy.
TPS protects citizens of other countries from deportation and allows them to live and work in the U.S. for some time if their home country is under significant turmoil. For tens of thousands of Hondurans, that turmoil was Hurricane Mitch, which slammed the country in 1998.
The Hondurans who came to the U.S. after the hurricane must leave within 18 months, DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen announced. After January 2020, they will be subject to deportation or must seek different immigration status.
"Based on careful consideration of available information … the secretary determined that the disruption of living conditions in Honduras from Hurricane Mitch that served as the basis for its TPS designation has decreased to a degree that it should no longer be regarded as substantial," Nielsen said.
Honduras still struggles under volatile conditions, The New York Times reports, as political unrest and high homicide rates make many immigrants uneasy about returning. Lawmakers and advocates have criticized the decision to scrap the program, calling it "unconscionable" and "a death sentence."
More than 300,000 immigrants from a dozen different countries have been granted TPS since 1990, reports McClatchy. TPS recipients can work legally, but cannot receive federal or state financial assistance. President Trump's administration has allowed protections for people from Haiti, Nicaragua, Sudan, Liberia, and El Salvador to expire. Summer Meza
An undocumented woman was reportedly detained by ICE agents at a courthouse while receiving a protective order for domestic violence
An undocumented woman was arrested at the El Paso County Courthouse last week while pursuing a protective court order for alleged domestic violence, El Paso Times reports. Federal agents received a tip that the woman was back in the United States, possibly from her alleged abuser, who is in custody, El Paso County attorney Jo Anne Bernal said.
"This is a woman who had suffered serious abuse," Bernal said.
The criminal report claims that Irvin (also spelled Ervin) Gonzalez had been deported six times since 2010 after arrests like possession of stolen mail, false imprisonment, and assault. Homeland Security Investigations Border Enforcement Security Taskforce agents learned she was back in the U.S. — possibly tipped off by her abuser — who is jailed on charges of forgery of a financial document. The criminal complaint alleges that Gonzalez, who is transgender, was staying at a shelter for victims of sexual and family violence, and that she was arrested on the street. Investigators say she was actually arrested in the courthouse while seeking a protective order.
"There were six ICE agents on the 10th floor," Bernal said, emphasizing that protective-order courts cannot be used as a place to detain immigrants. "Our clients come to us at the lowest point in their lives," she explained. "Many of them are so frightened of coming to us because of possible immigration concerns."
Bernal added to CBS News that in her 20 years at the El Paso County Courthouse, "I cannot recall an instance where ICE agents have gone into the domestic violence court, specifically looking for a victim of domestic violence." The news comes amid widespread reports of more than 680 arrests nationwide over five days last week in what ICE has called "routine" sweeps. Jeva Lange
Shortly after signing two executive orders on immigration Wednesday, President Donald Trump vowed to "get the bad ones out." "The day is over when they can stay in our country and wreak havoc," Trump said while speaking at the Department of Homeland Security about his plans to crackdown on immigration. "We are going to get them out and get them out fast." Trump said he was doing this because of his duty "to protect the lives of the American people," and insisted that "when it comes to public safety, there is no place for politics."
Trump went on to explain that he will "work within the existing system" to reinforce current immigration laws, and emphasized the importance of a strong border. "A nation without borders is not a nation," Trump said. "Beginning today, the United States of America gets back control of its borders."
Trump's executive orders direct funding towards the construction of the U.S.-Mexico border wall and revoke federal grants for sanctuary cities and U.S. cities that are not enforcing federal immigration laws. Trump indicated in an interview Wednesday that construction of the wall will begin in "months."
Watch a snippet of Trump's speech below. Becca Stanek
Trump at DHS: “A nation without borders is not a nation. Beginning today, the US gets back control of its borders.” https://t.co/qtcQjrpI22
— CNN (@CNN) January 25, 2017