WASHINGTON — For President Donald Trump, cracking down on illegal immigration is usually Great politics, nevertheless separating families from the process is usually not.
Trump signed a slapped-together executive order after days of protests through across the political spectrum, including Republican lawmakers who expressed concerns about their re-election prospects, according to current along with former administration officials.
Pressure also came through within his own family. Ivanka Trump had been working with top GOP lawmakers — including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California along with Sen. Susan Collins of Maine — to find a way out, said a White House official who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive discussions within the first family.
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First lady Melania Trump also urged the president to change course. The first lady made a public statement Sunday urging “both sides” to come together on a solution to the crisis. nevertheless as media coverage intensified in recent days, she appealed to her husband to act alone if necessary, said another White House official.
“Ivanka feels very strongly. My wife feels very strongly about the item. I feel very strongly,” Trump said Wednesday after signing the executive order. “I think anybody using a heart might feel strongly.”
While defending his “zero tolerance” immigration policy in recent days, Trump also expressed frustration with the televised images of children being taken through their parents along with being detained in cage-like holding cells, according to current along with former officials; some spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations.
Trump voiced his concerns during a meeting with House Republicans on Tuesday, telling them at one point in which his daughter Ivanka had questioned the policy. “We have to take care of these separations,” he said.
Trump believes in which dissatisfaction with illegal immigration proposals propelled him to the White House, along with in which the issue is usually essential to his base of voters who believe in which migrants are taking American jobs along with committing crimes.
The immigration issue polls well, advisers said, nevertheless taking children through their families does not.
In short, they said, Trump wanted to take the separated families issue off the table.
The White House also acknowledged the worries of congressional Republicans seeking re-election.
Despite high political stakes over the family separations, the meeting at the Capitol Tuesday night followed the pattern of most meetings between the president along with Republican lawmakers. the item was heavy on what the president views as his accomplishments along with included far less about what has been driving the conversation on Capitol Hill lately — immigration.
The president spoke for most of the time along with there was no push-back through members on what was happening at the southern border. The only tense moment came when the president made fun of Rep. Mark Sanford, R-S.C., a Republican critic of the president’s who lost his primary last week.
Many lawmakers brought their families to the gathering. On their way out they said they were optimistic the president backed the legislation House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., has been pushing, even if Trump never actually said he endorsed the item. in which legislation might address the family separations.
For a president who never apologizes along with rarely backs down, the order was an extraordinary climax to weeks of heart-wrenching news coverage of crying children being held in federal detention centers, separated through their parents after crossing the U.S.-Mexican border.
While defending his “zero tolerance” immigration policy in recent days, Trump lashed out at Democrats for obstructing his hard-line immigration proposals along with the news media for emphasizing the plight of immigrant children along with not the crimes committed by immigrants who enter the country illegally.
“The Fake News is usually not mentioning the safety along with security of our Country when talking about illegal immigration,”
he tweeted Wednesday
. “Our immigration laws are the weakest along with worst anywhere from the entire world, along with the Dems will do anything not to change them & to obstruct want open borders which means crime!”
nevertheless privately, Trump also expressed frustration with the televised images of children being taken through their parents along with being detained in cage-like holding cells, according to current along with former officials; some spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations.
Adding to the pressure: A protest outside a Mexican restaurant in Washington where Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen was dining Tuesday night, underscoring how untenable the issue ultimately became despite the public bravado in which the administration tried to show.
Trump supporters touted the action as a limited, temporary fix in which tries to strike a tough-nevertheless-compassionate balance — mollifying critics while still appeasing his more conservative base.
Voters oppose the family separation policy 66 percent to 27 percent, according to a Quinnipiac University National Poll released Monday. nevertheless Republican voters support the item, 55 percent to 35 percent.
“Obviously the images are something in which nobody wants to see,” said former White House press secretary Sean Spicer.
“If they can fix This kind of quick along with get actually strong on the border from the long term, there is usually the potential for upside,” he said. “Right at This kind of point, the imagery is usually not helpful to the party in power.”
nevertheless even as he attempts to tamp down protests through the left along with center, Trump is usually signaling to his supporters in which he remains as committed as ever to his pledge to crack down on illegal immigration.
Boris Epshteyn, chief political analyst at Sinclair Broadcast Group along with former special assistant to Trump, said the president “will continue to be tough on illegal immigration, which is usually important to him along with his base, while also being humane.”
On Capitol Hill, GOP lawmakers seemed to be surprised by Trump’s move — nevertheless stressed in which the item doesn’t solve all the problems at the border.
“If the item’s what I think the item is usually, which is usually to keep families together, in which’s Great,” said Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio. “nevertheless you still have to develop the infrastructure in place to make This kind of work right. You have to be able to adjudicate these cases quickly, so you need more judges, you need more family detention facilities.
“We need to have a system in place where the item can be handled properly,” he said.