The Public is Turning Against Trump's Child Separation Policy
As the public gets a sense of the cruelty of President Trump's child separation policy and see pictures of children housed together in cages, children torn from their parent's arms and see the anguish on their faces, they are turning against the policy. A new poll by Ipsos for the Daily Beast finds that only 27% of Americans support child separations at the border, although those identifying themselves as Republicans narrowly back the President. Independents and Democrats strongly oppose the policy.
Meanwhile, the Trump Administration continues to insist that the whole thing is the fault of Democrats, which is demonstrably false, and it appears that the public is beginning to understand that. The truth is complex, but Vox does an excellent job of explaining the issue here. Trump could revise the separation policy immediately to reduce its cruelty, but that would reduce the administration's leverage. The point of the policy is to force Congress to provide money for his border wall in order the alleviate the suffering. Democrat Rep. Adam Schiff, explained Trump's strategy best in pointing out that the administration is “using the grief, the tears, the pain of these kids as mortar to build our wall. And it’s an effort to extort a bill to their liking in the Congress.”
The tide may be turning, however, as some Republicans also spoke out over the weekend against the policy. Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine called it "contrary to our values in this country,” and former First Lady, Laura Bush described the policy as “cruel” and “immoral.”
Trump's child separation policy also received international condemnation. Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein, the United Nations high commissioner for human rights, criticized the administration during an address in Geneva. “The thought that any state would seek to deter parents by inflicting such abuse on children is unconscionable," she said.
The Trump administration may well receive even harsher criticism this week as the House takes up dueling immigration bills and more attention is focused on the 2000 or more cases of child separation.