Trump tells Republicans to stop 'wasting time' on immigration

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Relenting to pressure from lawmakers of both parties, as well as his wife and daughter, Ivanka, Trump signed an executive order Wednesday to stop separating families.

"Republicans should stop wasting their time on Immigration until after we elect more Senators and Congressmen/women in November", Trump tweeted, forecasting that the GOP would gain seats in the midterm election. "Dems are just playing games, have no intention of doing anything to solves this decades old problem".

Which is to say: The president has (apparently) decided that he would like to continue torturing small migrant children - and holding Dreamers hostage - until voters deliver him a nativist Senate, or Democrats agree to pay his ransom, and vote to fund his wall and slash legal immigration.

With President Trump suddenly more antagonist than ally, House Republicans confronted the grim reality Friday that they may have no way out of an immigration mess of the president's own making.

Protestors demonstrated Friday morning outside the suburban Washington home of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, two days after Trump announced her department would take over the handling and processing of families at the border.

The US House of Representatives on Thursday rejected a bill favoured by conservatives that would have halted the practice of splitting up families and addressed a range of other immigration issues.

"We can pass this legislation after the Red Wave", Trump tweeted.

House GOP leaders plan instead to hold a vote next week on the compromise measure they crafted, giving them time to add other components and muster up the necessary votes.

Earlier Thursday, by a vote of 193 to 231, the House defeated the Securing Americas Future Act of 2018, with 42 Republicans, including House Speaker Paul Ryan, not supporting the measure.

The Trump administration previously had not said whether any of the more 2,300 children separated from their families had been reunited.

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Just Tuesday, he met privately with GOP lawmakers and told them he supported the immigration legislation and would have their backs in November.

But House Republicans are moving forward as planned and pushing ahead with efforts to pass immigration legislation, said Rep. Steve Scalise of Louisiana, the majority whip.

Some reunifications were taking place, though it was not clear whether they involved the 700 children taken from parents between October and April, or the 2,300 since the mandatory prosecution of illegal border crossers, whose children were taken away as a result, began in early May. One of President Trump's latest set of tweets, however, puts the onus on the Democrats once again.

That dealt a serious blow to leaders' efforts to win support for legislation that already lacked enough votes to pass the House because of GOP divisions.

No one - not even the hardest of the immigration hardliners - can listen to the audio of the young kids crying and not be reminded that they are the real victims here, and the ones who really need our protection.

The Defense Department said it was preparing 20,000 temporary beds on military bases to hold children who cross the border unaccompanied by parents.

On Capitol Hill on Friday, the mood was gloomy, particularly among the more centrist Republicans who have been pushing the party's immigration compromise.

The administration began drawing up plans to house as many as 20,000 migrants on US military bases, though officials gave conflicting explanations as to whether those beds would be for children or for entire families.

The president said Friday that even if a measure passes, it's doomed in the Senate. "That's all we need", Curbelo said.

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