The Trump Administration Had No Plan To Reunite Migrant Families They Separated

As the Trump administration misses the first deadline to reunite migrant families, reports of horrific abuse mount.

President Donald Trump holds up an executive order he signed to end family separations, during an event in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, June 20, 2018. Looking on is Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, left. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

President Donald Trump holds up an executive order he signed to end family separations, during an event in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, June 20, 2018. Looking on is Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, left. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

The Rantt Rundown: Day 537 of the Trump presidency

The Big Story: The deadline to reunite the 102 separated migrant children under 5 with their families was today, and the Trump administration failed to meet it. Less than half have been reunited, with only four children so far and 34 expected be reunited by the end of the day. The Trump administration claims 27 children are not “eligible” to be reunited and 10 parents have already been deported. The others are being held up by DNA tests and pending confirmation of the migrants’ parenthood.

The June 26 federal court decision required that the 102 younger children be reunited by today while the remaining almost 3,000 still in the custody of Health and Human Services (HHS) were ordered to be reunited by July 26th. The Trump administration’s request for an extension was rejected by a federal judge on Friday, and given what we now know, it’s clear why they requested an extension – the Trump administration had no plan to reunite these families.

The Context: The Trump administration has separated over 3,000 immigrant children from their parents at the southern border since 2017. President Trump’s June 20th Executive Order rolled back some of his own administration’s “zero tolerance” policy, preventing new asylum-seeking families from being separated, and Border Patrol was later returned prosecutorial discretion when it comes to immigrant families.

It’s become clear that the Trump administration separated immigrant children from their parents with no plans to reunite them, given the fact some parents have been lost or deported without their children. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) did not put proper tracking processes in place for these families before handing the children over to HHS and detaining the parents separately in ICE custody. There have even been reports that they destroyed the records.

Because of this lack of tracking, the government is resorting to DNA tests (run by private contractors) which they’re reportedly forcing the migrants to pay for. As news of this was occurring, Buzzfeed reported that multiple migrant women in ICE custody had been denied medical care, leading them to bleed for hours and have miscarriages.

The Look Ahead: With the July 26th deadline approaching, one can only hope the Trump administration allocates more resources to fix the humanitarian crisis their own depravity and incompetence created. In light of this depravity, the American people are stepping up. RAICES raised $20 million from more than 1 million donors, in an effort to pay for the bonds of migrant mothers. They brought it to the White House.

Aside from the separated children, it appeared that indefinite migrant internment camps was what would come next, with the Trump administration reportedly preparing to house over 100,000 migrants on military and naval bases. But a federal judge in DC blocked the Trump administration’s efforts to systematically detain these migrant families and called for them to abide by prior government policy and release asylum seekers when appropriate. In the past, migrants who were awaiting a hearing on their asylum claim were released and put on ankle bracelets. It appeared effective given the fact a U.S. Government Accountability study found that 95% of migrants who were detained at the border and given ankle bracelet returned for their court date.

Today, it appears we may return to that, with the Trump administration claiming they will release hundreds of migrant families with ankle bracelets, effectively returning to the Obama-era policy (which Trump has widely condemned). This came after a judge on Monday rejected the Trump administration’s request for long-term detainment. The Justice Department, however, still claims the “zero tolerance” policy is intact. As with everything the Trump administration does, it’s important to monitor if they follow through.

Nonetheless, President Trump has been repeatedly calling for the end of immigrants’ due process rights at the border, all while his “denaturalization task force” takes aim at immigrants already residing in the U.S. And now, the Trump administration is reportedly discharging immigrants who are fighting for our country in the U.S. military.

There are still countless questions to be answered, thousands of families to be reunited, and multiple reports of abuse that must be addressed.

In other news…

  • President Trump launched $200 billion worth of new tariffs on China.
  • President Trump attacked unlawful immigration, in response to a question about the child separation.

  • Trump’s former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn’s sentencing was delayed, indicating he’s still talking to Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
  • The Trump administration slashed grants for Obamacare.
  • President Trump moved to make administrative law judges partisan appointments.
  • Ahead of the NATO summit tomorrow, President Trump had kind words for Russian President Vladimir Putin and the opposite for America’s allies. Meanwhile, the Senate voted 97-2, to reaffirm the US commitment to Article 5.

Rundown // Donald Trump / Human Rights / Immigration / News