Trump Gives Illegal Migrant Families a Choice: Stay Together or Not

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Left-wing immigration activists are up in arms again after the Trump administration released a new draft border plan that will potentially make family separation a hot-button issue once more. The activists, for whom there is only one acceptable answer – let illegal immigrants flow into the United States without the slightest impediment – are outraged about the new plan, which would hold families together in border detention for 20 days while offering the parents a simple choice.

Referred to as a binary option, the parents will have two choices: Keep their children with them in detention for the duration of the court process (which could take months or even longer) or allow the federal government to put their children into separate shelters where they may be re-housed with guardians living in the United States. Either way, the parents will remain in federal custody until their hearings have been completed.

The Trump administration is determined to move beyond the failed “catch and release” policies of previous presidents, which has contributed to the continuing surge of illegal immigrants coming across the border. Instead, they have adopted a “zero tolerance” policy that sharply reduces the risk of illegal immigrants missing their court dates and simply disappearing into the U.S. for decades. Unfortunately, they have found it difficult to navigate federal law, which prohibits the government from keeping children and their parents together in detention for more than 20 days. If, however, parents are given the binary option outlined above, it may be possible for the administration to keep families together without letting the adults go free.

This has not, naturally, satisfied all of the activists who think the family separation policy is the worst thing to ever happen in the southwestern United States.

“We believe detaining families who are not a flight risk is unlawful, and will cause yet more harm to children,” said ACLU attorney Lee Gelernt.

Well, that’s a statement built on a faulty premise, now isn’t it? Every family that comes across the border into Trump’s America is a flight risk. This president has tightened the restrictions on asylum claims; there just aren’t that many illegals who will be able to qualify for permanent residency. They know this. They know this all too well. So given half the chance to escape “into the shadows,” they will run like the wind. They know that deportation almost certainly awaits them at the end of the line.

Of course, Democrats can end family separation policies anytime they’re ready to negotiate. This president has expressed a willingness to back off the “zero tolerance” policy as soon as he gets what he’s been asking Congress for from the day he took office: A border wall, an end to chain migration policies, and the termination of the diversity visa lottery. The longer the Democrats play hard ball on these requests, the more obvious it is that they’re using these children as political pawns.