The White House is readying operational plans in case President Donald Trump orders the southern border closed to punish Mexico for not taking more action to quell the northward flow of Central American migrants, two sources familiar with the plans tell The Daily Caller.
One source detailed how the plans include an assessment of the potential financial damage of a border closure, which is being prepared by the Council of Economic Advisers. Trump has spoken approvingly of closing the U.S.-Mexico border in recent days as border authorities report the worst crisis they have seen in their history.
A source familiar with the discussions told the Caller that Trump may not close the border, but rather use his continued threats as a way to elevate discussion of changing U.S. asylum laws in Congress. Trump is expected to the visit the border Friday during a multi-day trip to the western United States, during which he could announce a border closure. (RELATED: Trump ‘May Close The Southern Border’)
Trump told reporters Tuesday in the Oval Office that “if we don’t make a deal with Congress, the border’s going to be closed. 100%.”
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters Tuesday morning that Trump was not working on a particular timeline in his threat to close the border, but simply demanding that the country step up its efforts to quell the migrant flow.
“Democrats in Congress are leaving us no choice. This is not the path the president wants to take but they’re leaving us no choice because they’re unwilling to work with us to fix the problem because they’re too busy playing politics instead of doing their jobs,” Sanders said in a Tuesday morning interview on Fox News.
National Border Patrol Council President Brandon Judd told Daily Caller Editorial Director Vince Coglianese that the influx of migrants was the worst crisis in the history of border enforcement since 1924. Judd’s comments come days after U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Commissioner Kevin McAleenan told reporters the situation at the border is nearing “breaking point” as the United States is on track to bring in nearly 1 million illegal immigrants.
Officials say the crisis is exacerbated by the number of family units arriving at the border claiming asylum. The asylum claims require adjudication in U.S. court and release them into the interior of the country with only a court order to appear before a judge. Many of these asylum seekers end up remaining inside the United States even after their asylum claims are rejected.
Trump has tweeted several times about the border in recent days, repeating his threat to close the border.
Mexico must use its very strong immigration laws to stop the many thousands of people trying to get into the USA. Our detention areas are maxed out & we will take no more illegals. Next step is to close the Border! This will also help us with stopping the Drug flow from Mexico!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 30, 2019