White House considered 100,000 National Guard soldiers for immigration crackdown
Friday morning, the Associated Press reported that the White House has been deliberating over how to redouble efforts in their agenda to crack down on undocumented immigrants by utilizing “as many as 100,000 National Guard troops to round up unauthorized immigrants.”
The news comes after reports from last weekend of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s conducting a series of raids and rounding up hundreds of immigrants in at least six cities across the U.S. This was the first large-scale operation targeting undocumented immigrants under the Trump administration, which has promised to deport anywhere between three and 11 million immigrants.
This is as good a time as any, I suppose, to think about what Speaker Ryan promised during his CNN town hall on January 12: “Everybody thinks there’s some deportation force that’s being assembled. That’s not true.”
In addition, White House assistant press secretary Michael Short tweeted moments after the AP story that the idea is “not true,” and “a very senior” official told New York Magazine’s Olivia Nuzzi that the story is “false.”
The communication team’s denial is par for the course for the Trump/Bannon White House, an administration fueled simultaneously by chaos and incompetence.
UPDATE, 10:46 a.m.: White House press secretary Sean Spicer issues a non-denial that the White House is considering this measure. In addition, Spicer scolded the Associated Press for being “irresponsible” for tweeting before getting comment. (“I wish you guys had asked before you tweeted,” he said.) But the AP said they had asked for comment multiple times before tweeting.
Sean Spicer tells press pool that AP report on National Guard being used to round up people in the U.S. illegally is “100% not true.” pic.twitter.com/rHh7W9XZc5
— Jenna Johnson (@wpjenna) February 17, 2017
UPDATE, 11:13 a.m.: Spicer is full of shit, according to the Department of Homeland Security.
A DHS official says memo was “a very early, pre decisional draft… and was never seriously considered by the Department”
— Dorey Scheimer (@DoreyScheimer) February 17, 2017
UPDATE, 1:09 p.m.: The Associated Press published the draft memo, which was addressed from Department of Homeland Security secretary General John Kelly, but a DHS spokesperson told The Daily Beast that Kelly did not write it.