Trump: ‘I am not going to let them go’
President Donald Trump on Thursday dismissed suggestions he could take executive action on immigration reform, saying the president is focused on a broader agenda and will be able to do so.
Speaking to reporters aboard Air Force One, Trump was asked about a report from The Hill on Wednesday that he could order immigration enforcement agents to stop issuing driver’s licenses and birth certificates to undocumented immigrants, saying he is focused and has a broad agenda.
“I’m not going [to] let them get away with it,” Trump said.
“I am going to be focused on the broad agenda that we’re talking about and I’m not gonna let them do anything else.
We’re going to get it done.”
The Hill reports Trump could order the Border Patrol agents to enforce immigration law and “stop issuing birth certificates.”
The president did not elaborate on how he would accomplish this, but it would be the first time he has addressed immigration enforcement issues in such detail.
In addition to issuing a travel ban to restrict immigration from seven predominantly Muslim countries, Trump has proposed increasing penalties for those who enter the country illegally, including for individuals who have committed serious crimes or crimes against the United States.
Trump has also signaled he could push for a “deportation force” similar to the one he launched in 2014.
He said during the 2016 campaign that he would consider using a deportation force to deport all illegal immigrants, but that he did not have the authority to do that.
“He can’t do that, that would be against federal law, but he can’t,” Trump told reporters at his White House.
Trump said he will ask the Department of Homeland Security to study the deportation force proposal, and that he will consider it again in the future.
“We’re not going anywhere,” Trump added.
“But I have to tell you, I’m very, very interested in getting to a point where we can start putting the deportation forces on, and we’re going have a big group of people that have to be removed.
And I have no idea where that’s going to come from.”
Trump is expected to announce an executive order to address immigration enforcement in the coming days.
The White House did not respond to questions about the executive order.
Trump also said during his speech that he believes the United Nations should focus on humanitarian aid rather than on dealing with the refugee crisis.
He said that while the United Nation and other international organizations have “to get on the same page,” the U.S. should focus solely on its own security.
“If we’re really gonna have a humanitarian impact, we’ve got to start taking care of our own, and our own people, instead of having them go to a foreign country,” Trump, who previously criticized the UN for failing to provide adequate humanitarian aid, said.
“And I’m telling you, if the United Kingdom wants to send a million refugees to a place where they have no money to survive, well, you know what?
We’re not gonna take care of that.”
Trump also criticized the United states’ refugee resettlement program, which has seen record levels of Syrian refugees arriving in the United Stated.
He called it a “complete failure.”
“When the United Arab Emirates took thousands of Syrian families to Turkey and it was over a year ago, they were brought back.
They had no money,” Trump argued.
“We’ve been putting people in camps, we’re putting people on planes, we don’t even have money for food.
And they’ve been put in camps for a year.
And what we’re seeing is a complete failure.”
The White House also announced that Trump is planning to hold a “press conference” to address the refugee issue, which is expected in the next two weeks.
Trump has already been criticized by his own Cabinet and members of Congress for failing “to properly vet” the refugees that have arrived in the U, as well as the refugees who have been approved for resettlement.