President Trump is preparing to send up to 1,000 active-duty Army troops to the U.S.-Mexico border and is reportedly considering an executive order to ban the caravan of Central American migrants from entering the United States, effectively shutting down the border.
Under the plan, all migrants would be blocked, even those seeking asylum. Under U.S. law, foreigners can claim they are fleeing persecution in their home countries to apply for asylum. They are held and eventually receive a hearing. But Trump's move would nix that under the name of "national security," and they would simply be turned away.
"The Trump administration would publish fast-track regulation that would restrict certain migrants' ability to seek asylum. The regulation would be paired with a related proclamation from President Donald Trump," according to Politico. But no full plan has been approved yet.
“The administration is considering a wide range of administrative, legal and legislative options to address the Democrat-created crisis of mass illegal immigration,” a White House official said. “No decisions have been made at this time. Nor will we forecast to smugglers or caravans what precise strategies will or will not be deployed.”
Trump is also preparing "to send as many as 1,000 active-duty Army troops to help secure the southern border — as he works to stop what he has called an 'onslaught' of immigrants only days before the midterm elections," the New York Times reports.
Kirstjen Nielsen, head of the Department of Homeland Security, said Thursday that "everything is on the table."
"If they come here illegally with no legitimate reason to stay, they absolutely will be apprehended and removed immediately," she told Fox News. "They should be seeking refuge in Mexico. To ignore refuge and continue, in some cases, to come to the United States raises questions of what their real motives are."
Trump has taken an increasingly hard line on the migrant caravan, which some news outlets say has swelled to 14,000 people. "To those in the Caravan, turnaround, we are not letting people into the United States illegally," he wrote Thursday on Twitter. "Go back to your Country and if you want, apply for citizenship like millions of others are doing!"
He has also warned against following the lead of European nations, which were overrun with refugees in the past few years and are now struggling to cope with the influx.
"For those who want and advocate for illegal immigration, just take a good look at what has happened to Europe over the last 5 years. A total mess! They only wish they had that decision to make over again." he tweeted.
On Friday, Trump said: "The United States has been spending Billions of Dollars a year on Illegal Immigration. This will not continue. Democrats must give us the votes to pass strong (but fair) laws. If not, we will be forced to play a much tougher hand."