President Trump minced no words during an interview at the White House when he described that a “comprehensive” immigration executive order would be coming as early as next week.
The order, Trump hinted, could change the entire landscape of the immigration system.
“We’ll be doing an executive order sometime next week, yes,” Trump said during the interview on Thursday, as the Washinton Examiner reports.
He added, it “will talk about everything and it will be quite comprehensive.”
While he did not say exactly what the order would do, or change, some context could help determine the president’s thinking.
A thousands-strong migrant caravan is looming several hundred miles away from the U.S.-Mexico border and Trump previously discussed fundamentally changing birthright citizenship—or he could nix it altogether.
Recently, members of the migrant caravan announced a lawsuit against the Trump administration for what they claimed was a violation of the Due Process afforded under the Fifth Amendment. They claim Trump’s denial of the entire migrant caravan excludes asylum seekers within the caravan following U.S. law.
So, Trump could change the rules for how asylum seekers are allowed into the country.
ABC News reports Trump has discussed changing the asylum rule before:
Trump said the White House is finalizing plans to require migrants to “present themselves lawfully at a point of entry,” and that he would sign a “comprehensive” executive order “sometime next week.”
Under current law, immigrants may apply for asylum regardless of how they enter the country. Trump’s said his order would require them to apply at a port of entry.
The above migrant lawsuit could also challenge Trump’s decision to require asylum seekers to enter the U.S. at a point of entry.
Trump could also be looking at options to allow troops stationed at the border to physically defend it and carry out law enforcement duties.
ABC News reports there could be a situation where the stationed troops could be authorized to use force against the arriving migrants:
For the first time, Trump also seemed to threaten the use of force against migrants at the border.
“They’re throwing rocks viciously and violently,” he claimed, referring to an encounter between the migrants and Mexican police. “They want to throw rocks at our military, our military is going to fight back.”
Asked if the military troops being sent to the border might fire on migrants, Trump responded, “I hope not.” But he quickly added, “Anybody throwing rocks … we will consider that a firearm.”
In his remarks at the White House, Trump said he was not going to tolerate the caravan attacking the troops in any way: “We’re not going to put up with that. If they want to throw rocks at our military, our military fights back. We’re going to consider — and I told them, consider it a rifle. When they throw rocks like they did at the Mexico military and police, I say, consider it a rifle.”
Trump could also look to end birthright citizenship or the “catch and release” immigration policy. Via Axios:
Trump told “Axios on HBO” that he has run the idea of ending birthright citizenship by his counsel and plans to proceed with the highly controversial move, which certainly will face legal challenges.
- “It was always told to me that you needed a constitutional amendment. Guess what? You don’t,” Trump said, declaring he can do it by executive order.
- When told that’s very much in dispute, Trump replied: “You can definitely do it with an Act of Congress. But now they’re saying I can do it just with an executive order.”
- “We’re the only country in the world where a person comes in and has a baby, and the baby is essentially a citizen of the United States … with all of those benefits,” Trump continued. “It’s ridiculous. It’s ridiculous. And it has to end.” (More than 30 countries, most in the Western Hemisphere, provide birthright citizenship.)
- “It’s in the process. It’ll happen … with an executive order.”