Donald Trump Wanted to Dump Asylum Seekers on Streets of Democratic Cities

Jim Loscalzo/CNP via ZUMA

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Just when you think Donald Trump can’t surprise you anymore with his boorish behavior, he takes things to a whole new level:

White House officials have tried to pressure U.S. immigration authorities to release detainees onto the streets of “sanctuary cities” to retaliate against President Trump’s political adversaries, according to Department of Homeland Security officials and email messages reviewed by The Washington Post….House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s district in San Francisco was among those the White House wanted to target, according to DHS officials. The administration also considered releasing detainees in other Democratic strongholds.

….The attempt at political retribution raised alarm within ICE, with a top official responding that it was rife with budgetary and liability concerns, and noting that “there are PR risks as well.” After the White House pressed again in February, ICE’s legal department rejected the idea as inappropriate and rebuffed the administration.

I don’t even know what to say about this stuff anymore. Immigration hawks all voted for Trump because he kept chanting “Build the wall,” seemingly unaware that he was doing it only because it got loud cheers at his rallies and Trump loves it when people cheer for him. Beyond that, he has no clue about policy beyond a desire for revenge against anyone who’s ever crossed him. Why the hawks ever thought he’d follow through with something that might actually reduce illegal immigration remains a mystery.

As for dumping asylum seekers onto the streets of Democratic districts, it’s politics on the level of a third-grader. But it doesn’t matter. I assume, as usual, that virtually no one in the Republican Party will say a peep about it.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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