Trump announced that 'millions' of undocumented immigrant families will be rounded up and deported.
In what appears to be an effort to throw red meat at his racist base ahead of his official 2020 reelection launch, Trump on Monday night announced that ICE will be rounding up and deporting "millions" of undocumented immigrants.
"Next week ICE will begin the process of removing the millions of illegal aliens who have illicitly found their way into the United States. They will be removed as fast as they come in," Trump tweeted, less than 24 hours before his planned campaign rally in Orlando, where he'll officially kick off his reelection campaign — despite the fact that he's never actually stopped running for president.
Trump's announcement is problematic for many reasons.
Second, the Washington Post reported that this raid Trump announced appears to be the same operation that former Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen — who had no qualms about family separations, nor the housing of immigrants in dog kennels — was too hesitant to carry out, leading to her ouster.
Third, Trump's claim that "millions" would be deported in the operation is simply not feasible with ICE's current staffing and funding levels, according to the Washington Post. Not to mention, the current surge of Central American immigrants seeking asylum at the border has taken up resources that ICE once used to conduct arrests of undocumented immigrants in the U.S.
And lastly, U.S. officials told the Washington Post that operations like this are not typically publicly revealed before they take place. In fact, the Trump administration chastised the mayor of Oakland in 2018 when she revealed planned ICE raids.
"The Oakland mayor's decision to publicize her suspicions about ICE operations further increased that risk for my officers and alerted criminal aliens — making clear that this reckless decision was based on her political agenda with the very federal laws that ICE is sworn to uphold," then-Deputy ICE Director Thomas D. Homan said in February 2018 about the mayor's announcement.
Not to mention, Trump seemed to announce this one before immigration officials were even ready to carry out the effort.
Trump's immigrant-hating adviser Stephen Miller, however, thinks that publicizing raids will be a deterrent for immigrants to come to the U.S., according to the Washington Post.
Of course, it also could be that Trump wants to tell his supporters who show up at his Florida rally Tuesday night that he made good on his promise of a deportation force.
No matter the issue, Trump's bragging about an operation that targets families and could leave them separated is vile. But after more than two years of witnessing his conduct in the Oval Office, vile conduct is what we've come to expect.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.