Friday April 19, 2019
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FACT CHECK: “President Obama had Child Separation, I’m the One that Stopped it,” Says Trump

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials announced that they apprehended about 53,000 parents and children at the southern border in March

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Trump was again sending her nomination to the Senate for confirmation as a judge of the federal court for Eastern New York. VOA

President Donald Trump is wholly mispresenting the immigration detention policy he introduced that forced migrant children from their parents at the border.

“President Obama had child separation,” Trump said Tuesday. “I’m the one that stopped it.”

In fact, he stopped — or at least suspended — family separations that spiked as a result of his own “zero-tolerance” policy.

A look at his remarks to reporters before meeting Egyptian President Abdel-Fatah el-Sissi:

TRUMP on family separations: “President Obama had the law. We changed the law, and I think the press should accurately report it but of course they won’t.”

THE FACTS: This is false. Trump did not achieve any change in the law.

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TRUMP on family separations: “President Obama had the law. We changed the law, and I think the press should accurately report it but of course they won’t.” Pixabay

Operating under the same immigration laws as Barack Obama, Trump instituted a zero-tolerance policy aimed at detaining everyone who was caught crossing the border illegally and criminally prosecuting all the adults.

The policy meant adults were taken to court for criminal proceedings and their children were separated and sent into the care of the Health and Human Services Department. In the face of a public uproar, Trump suspended most separations in June. About 2,400 children were taken from parents at the height of the separations. During the Obama administration and before Trump’s zero-tolerance policy was introduced, migrant families caught illegally entering the U.S. were usually referred for civil deportation proceedings, not requiring separation, unless they were known to have a criminal record.

Trump repeatedly but without specifics rails against a “Democrat” law that he wrongly claims to have changed. He appears to be referring to one that passed unanimously in Congress and was signed by Republican President George W. Bush. It was focused on freeing and otherwise helping children who come to the border without a parent or guardian and does not call for family separation.

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Migrants from Venezuela, Cuba and Guatemala wait at bridge between Matamoros, Mexico and Brownsville, Texas for immigration officials to allow them to turn themselves in and ask for asylum in U.S., Nov. 12, 2018. VOA

TRUMP: “Just so you understand, President Obama separated the children.”

THE FACTS: Not in widespread fashion. Then and now, immigration officials may take a child from a parent in certain cases, such as serious criminal charges against a parent, concerns over the health and welfare of a child or medical concerns. The Obama administration also contended with a surge of minors who came to the border without parents and were held in short-term Border Patrol detention.

It did not seek to criminally prosecute all who crossed the border illegally, without regard to whether those who were caught had committed crimes other than illegal entry.

Family separations were the exception before Trump made them the rule.

TRUMP on family separations: “Once you don’t have it, that’s why you see many more people coming. They’re coming like it’s a picnic, because ‘let’s go to Disneyland.'”

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Migrants from Central America wait inside an enclosure, where they are being held by U.S. Customs and Border Protection, after crossing the U.S.-Mexico border illegally and turning themselves in to request asylum, in El Paso, Texas, March 29, 2019. VOA

THE FACTS: It’s not been proved that people are discouraged from coming to the U.S. when they know their children will be taken from them if they are caught.

ALSO READ: Opening of One of the Most High-Profile Position in President’s Cabinet after Homeland Security Secretary Resigns

Apprehensions did fall last summer, after the June suspension of separations, but they decline most summers because of the extreme heat in much of Mexico and the border region.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials announced on Tuesday that they apprehended about 53,000 parents and children at the southern border in March. The officials declined to answer a question about whether they believed family separation was an effective deterrent. (VOA)

Next Story

U.S. President Donald Trump Vetoes Measure to End U..S Involvement in Yemen War

ump issued his first veto last month on legislation related to immigration. Trump had declared a national emergency so he could use more money to construct a border wall. Congress voted to block the emergency declaration and Trump vetoed that measure.

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Men inspect the site of an airstrike by Saudi-led coalition in Sanaa, Yemen, April 10, 2019. VOA

President Donald Trump on Wednesday vetoed a bill passed by Congress to end U.S. military assistance in Saudi Arabia’s war in Yemen.

In a break with the president, Congress voted for the first time earlier this month to invoke the War Powers Resolution to try to stop U.S. involvement in a foreign conflict.

The veto — the second in Trump’s presidency — was expected. Congress lacks the votes to override him.

“This resolution is an unnecessary, dangerous attempt to weaken my constitutional authorities, endangering the lives of American citizens and brave service members, both today and in the future,” Trump wrote in explaining his veto.

Congress has grown uneasy with Trump’s close relationship with Saudi Arabia as he tries to further isolate Iran, a regional rival.

Many lawmakers also criticized the president for not condemning Saudi Arabia for the killing of Jamal Khashoggi, a Saudi who lived in the United States and had written critically about the kingdom. Khashoggi went into the Saudi consulate in Istanbul last October and never came out. Intelligence agencies said Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was complicit in the killing.

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Congress has grown uneasy with Trump’s close relationship with Saudi Arabia as he tries to further isolate Iran, a regional rival. VOA

The U.S. provides billions of dollars of arms to the Saudi-led coalition fighting against Iran-backed rebels in Yemen. Members of Congress have expressed concern about the thousands of civilians killed in coalition airstrikes since the conflict began in 2014. The fighting in the Arab world’s poorest country also has left millions suffering from food and medical care shortages and has pushed the country to the brink of famine.

House approval of the resolution came earlier this month on a 247-175 vote. The Senate vote last month was 54-46.

Democratic Rep. Eliot Engel of New York, chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, voted to end U.S. military assistance to the war, saying the humanitarian crisis in Yemen triggered “demands moral leadership.”

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President Donald Trump on Wednesday vetoed a bill passed by Congress to end U.S. military assistance in Saudi Arabia’s war in Yemen. VOA

The top Republican on the committee, Rep. Michael McCaul of Texas, acknowledged the dire situation in Yemen for civilians, but spoke out in opposition to the bill. McCaul said it was an abuse of the War Powers Resolution and predicted it could disrupt U.S. security cooperation agreements with more than 100 countries.

Also Read: Despite Tariff War With U.S, China’s Economic Growth is Steady

Trump issued his first veto last month on legislation related to immigration. Trump had declared a national emergency so he could use more money to construct a border wall. Congress voted to block the emergency declaration and Trump vetoed that measure. (VOA)