Sen. Bernie Sanders said Sunday President Trump’s announcement there would be mass deportations is purely political, saying there’s better ways to deal with the immigration problem at the southern border.
“It’s not an accident he announced this the same time he announced he was seeking reelection,” the Vermont Independent told CBS. “This is his entire political strategy to divide the American people up.”
Mr. Sanders comments come after the president delayed mass deportations, which were set to begin Sunday. He said they would occur in two weeks if Democrats don’t come up with a solution to fix the flood of migrants at the southern border.
But on Sunday, the president took to Twitter to say he doubts Congress will act to change asylum loopholes.
“I want to give the Democrats every last chance to quickly negotiate simple changes to Asylum and Loopholes. This will fix the Southern Border, together with the help that Mexico is now giving us. Probably won’t happen, but worth a try. Two weeks and big Deportation begins!” the president tweeted Sunday.
The halt on Sunday’s round-up came hours after Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, California Democrat, said the mass deportations was too severe.
Vice President Mike Pence told CNN he expects more than a million people will come into the country illegally this year.
The administration has called for Congress to come up with a bipartisan solution to fix the asylum loopholes that some have exploited to get into the country, knowing those coming in family units have to be released within 20 days after an arrest. Officials say the asylum laws have led to an increase in human trafficking.
“Congress has got to step up,” Mr. Pence said on Sunday.
Administration officials have also been criticized by Democrats for not supplying migrant children with safe conditions.
Rep. Adam Schiff, California Democrat, said it was “immoral” for the children to be sleeping on concrete floors without blankets, soap and toothbrushes.
“The cruelty is part of their policy,” he told CNN.
Mr. Pence said children being deprived sanitary conditions is unacceptable, but noted the border patrol agents are being overwhelmed, calling on Congress to fix the laws.