'10 cities, thousands of targets': The Trump administration is reportedly considering a plot for 'mass arrests' of migrants
A new report from the Washington Post Monday night revealed plans inside the Trump administration to sweep through 10 different cities and arrest as many as 10,000 immigrants in one go, a horrific and authoritarian display of state power clearly designed to inspire fear and without regard for the inevitable errors and trauma inflicted.
The report explained:
According to seven current and former Department of Homeland Security officials, the administration wanted to target the crush of families that had crossed the U.S.-Mexico border after the president’s failed “zero tolerance” prosecution push in early 2018. The ultimate purpose, the officials said, was a show of force to send the message that the United States was going to get tough by swiftly moving to detain and deport recent immigrants — including families with children.
The sprawling operation included an effort to fast-track immigration court cases, allowing the government to obtain deportation orders against those who did not show for their hearings — officials said 90 percent of those targeted were found deportable in their absence. The subsequent arrests would have required coordinated raids against parents with children in their homes and neighborhoods.
“The proposal was nowhere near ready for prime time,” an official reportedly told the Post. “They wanted 10 cities, thousands of targets.”
The plan was so haphazard and poorly conceived, the Post reported, that even former Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen opposed it, despite having no problem with other draconian measures against immigrants. Immigration and Customs Enforcement official Ronald Vitiello also reportedly opposed it.
Now, both of them are gone, having been ousted by Trump.
And according to the Post, the plan is still under consideration. It also said that Vitiello and Nielsen's opposition to the plan was part of the reason they were forced out, even though their objections were pragmatic rather than principled. Stephen Miller, one of Trump's top policy aides and a rabidly anti-immigrant bigot, has reportedly been pushing for the plan.
“The level of depravity in terms of this administration has no bounds. It’s just insane,” Melissa Mark-Viverito, president of the Latino Victory Project, told the paper. “It’s inhumane. There is no sense of the understanding what the implications are for the greater society. There is no consideration that these families are making positive economic contributions to these cities. It is about fearmongering to the nth degree.”