President Trump on Saturday confirmed The Washington Post's Friday report that his administration is considering ways to legally revive its suspended policy of separating migrant children from their parents at the border.
"We're looking at a lot of different things having to do with illegal immigration," he said. "We're going to do whatever we can do to get it slowed down."
Splitting up families, Trump argued, could serve as a deterrent. "If they feel there will be separation, they don't come," he said, claiming without evidence that there are "really bad people coming in" who "haven't known the children for 20 minutes, and they grab children, and they use them to come into our country."
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Border apprehensions have increased this year after a decline in 2017; nevertheless, the larger trend is a marked decline over the past two decades. Many of the families separated were not illegal immigrants but asylum-seekers who attempted to enter the country legally. Several hundred children remain separated from their families months after the separation policy was shut down in court.
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