Washington Examiner: Trump moves to limit asylum protections for migrants who cross the border illegally9 November 2018 | 18:20 | FOCUS News Agency
"We want people to come into our country, but they have to come into the country legally," the president said.
Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker and Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen announced new executive actions Thursday evening that would restrict the ability of migrants to seek asylum at the U.S.-Mexico border. The new restrictions did not take effect until Trump signed the proclamation Friday.
"Our asylum system is overwhelmed with too many meritless asylum claims from aliens who place a tremendous burden on our resources, preventing us from being able to expeditiously grant asylum to those who truly deserve it," Whitaker said in a statement Thursday.
U.S. law states that any migrant who enters the U.S. can apply for asylum "whether or not at a designated port of arrival."
Under the new changes, migrants who are seeking asylum will have to make their claims at officials ports of entry. At points of entry, "they would be processed in a controlled, orderly, and lawful manner," the new rule states.
In the run-up to the midterm elections, the president made a caravan of migrants heading to the southern U.S. border a key campaign issue, hoping it would energize the Republican base to get out and vote. The president said last week that he planned to amend asylum protections ahead of the caravan's expected arrival at the border.
Former Attorney General Jeff Sessions made a number of hard-line immigration moves during his time serving in the Trump administration.
Over the summer, Sessions released guidance that said illegal immigrants who seek refuge in the U.S. from domestic or gang violence will no longer qualify for automatic asylum.
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