Poll: Majority side with Trump on immigration, blame parents for detention crisis
According to the poll, 54 percent of likely voters said that the parents of detained children are to blame for knowingly breaking the law in the first place. Only 35 percent blame the Trump administration for the crisis.
The President has come under fire in recent weeks from Democrats, celebrities, and the Twitter #resistance for his administration’s policy of separating the children of illegal immigrants from their parents and detaining them.
As his administration struggles to secure Democrat votes for a new immigration bill, President Trump signed an executive order on Wednesday ending the policy of separating children from their law-breaking parents. The new order allows families to be detained together, except "when there is a concern that detention of an alien child with the child’s alien parent would pose a risk to the child’s welfare."
The Trump administration has warned immigrant parents not to bring their children across the border illegally. “If people don't want to be separated from their children, they should not bring them with them,” he said earlier this month. He did concede, however, that parents and children should be held together.
The poll numbers seem to show a discrepancy between the media’s coverage of the crisis - which featured news anchors shedding on-air tears and celebrities calling for bizarrely cruel punishment for Trump’s family - and the public’s opinion.
Rachel Maddow chokes up and cries on air as she struggles to deliver news that migrant babies and toddlers have been sent to "tender age" shelters pic.twitter.com/O6crm8cvyR— Justin Baragona (@justinbaragona) June 20, 2018
However, protesters have kept pressure on the Trump administration. On Friday, protesters surrounded Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen’s house in Alexandria, Virginia, chanting “free the kids” and holding placards featuring Nielsen’s face and the words “child snatcher.”
Protestors are outside of DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen’s Alexandria townhouse, playing audio of the detained children. She appears to be still be home. pic.twitter.com/akIcxOcM3q— Philip Lewis (@Phil_Lewis_) June 22, 2018
Overall, Trump’s approach to immigration is a popular one according to the poll. 54 percent of respondents agree with President Trump’s assertion that "The United States will not be a migrant camp, and it will not be a refugee holding facility. Not on my watch."
Moreover, just over half of all voters favor Trump’s immigration reform plan, detailed in his State of the Union Address in January. Trump’s plan would provide a pathway to citizenship for those brought into the country illegally when they were children, build a wall on the Mexican border and change legal immigration to a more merit-based system.
Only 37 percent of voters said that they would like to live in a ‘sanctuary community,’ where local authorities shield illegal immigrants from prosecution by federal immigration authorities.
President Trump is directing agencies to reunite immigrant families at the moment, and First Lady Melania Trump made a high-profile journey to a detention facility in Texas on Thursday. Nevertheless, a Justice Department spokeswoman has confirmed that the zero-tolerance policy on illegal immigration will continue, and that no changes will be made to the current prosecution process.
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