For the event Trump came armed with human props for those watching at home. He shamelessly surrounded himself with mothers and fathers of people killed by undocumented immigrants as he promised that DHS would create a new office focused on the victims of unauthorized immigration.
During Trump's sales pitch he made it abundantly clear that his concern was not how his policies would affect undocumented immigrants but instead sold the deal almost solely in terms of those who have killed American citizens...
“[People] talk about how enforcing immigration law is going to separate illegal immigrant families. But the families they don’t talk about are the families of Americans forever separated from the people they love. They don’t talk about it, ever. As your president, I have no higher duty than to protect the lives of the American people.”
FACT CHECK: There is absolutely no evidence that immigrants are either more or less likely to commit crimes than US citizens.
Trump went on to claim the executive orders would...
“save thousands of lives, millions of jobs and billions and billions of dollars.”
That statement becomes very debatable once you realize Trump’s proposed wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, which is about 1,900 miles, would likely cost up to $15 billion, and possibly as much as $25 billion dollars.
Although he claimed throughout the campaign that Mexico would pay for it, Trump now says the U.S. government would have to finance the construction before being reimbursed by Mexico at a later date.
|INTERACTIVE MAP: Sanctuary cities, counties and states across the US|
As for Trump's executive order concerning sanctuary cities, a broad term for jurisdictions that do not fully cooperate with Immigration and Customs Enforcement efforts, it states that those who do not comply with it's measures may lose federal law enforcement grants. In addition it declares that the federal government would "shame" those cities into compliance by posting a list of the crimes committed by undocumented immigrants in jurisdictions that declined ICE’s requests to hold certain people.
The order states...
“Jurisdictions that willfully refuse to comply are not eligible to receive Federal grants, except as deemed necessary for law enforcement purposes by the attorney general or the secretary.”
Many leaders in jurisdictions that have sanctuary cities - which include: New York, Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia and San Francisco - have said they have no intention of altering policy based on Trump’s threats.
In addition to the two executive orders Trump also signed directives that would make effectively make every undocumented immigrant a priority for deportation.
In related news Trump is scheduled to meet with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto on Tuesday. Nieto has rejected repeatedly Trump’s claims that Mexico will pay for a border wall saying earlier this month saying that...
“At no time will we accept anything that goes against our dignity as a country and our dignity as Mexicans"
Mexico has also threatened to walk away from economic talks with the U.S. is Trump continues his insistence on having Mexico pay for the wall or impede remittances from Mexican nationals.
All in a day's work.