NTF Issue Paper: president51.doc. 10-18.

BACKGROUND. Two huge caravans consisting of 10,000 alleged asylum-seekers is snaking its way north from Central America. The migrant caravans could number 20,000 by the time they reach our southern border. The intention is to overwhelm the American Border Patrol. Mexico has done little to stop the caravans, and U.S. authorities do not anticipate Mexican law enforcement will do much to either protect or dissuade the marchers. A record number of asylum-seeking families from Latin America this fall already has overwhelmed border agents and immigration authorities. Border Patrol facilities are crowded with newly- arrived families, bed space at family detention centers in Texas is at a premium, and immigration court backlogs are burgeoning. An increasing influx since the outcry against separating family members resulted in a U.S. policy change and get out of jail free cards for border crossers. Caravans do not stem from a humanitarian crisis in Central America but are organized incursions planned by foreign and domestic political agitators intent on using migration as “a political weapon to foment border chaos.” A third caravan is now organizing.

THE DANGER. Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen warned of illegal immigrant caravans heading toward the U.S. exploited by cartels that control most of the illegal flow of people and drugs through Latin America. Yet, warnings of a tough policy from U.S. officials have done little to deter the illegals, who for years have seen relatives and neighbors easily sneak across the border to enter the U.S. with little consequence. The ease of entering is a selling point for the cartels, who control the drug and human smuggling routes into the U.S. and require payment of a fee to cross the boundary. Court records show that fees typically range from $1,000 to $2,000, not including thousands of dollars in other fees that cover foot guides, drivers, stash houses, etc. Vice President Mike Pence said that over the last year more than 225,000 people from Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador had attempted to illegally enter the U.S., accounting for more than half of those apprehended at the southern border. More political than before, caravan members have voiced their open hostility to American immigration policies and Pres. Trump. The president of Guatemala announced that authorities had nabbed almost 100 Isis terrorists there and deported them back to the Middle East. Some of these terrorists already had melted into one migrant caravan advancing toward our southern border. That president also revealed that his law officers had captured over 1,000 gang members, including MS-13 members, trying to sneak across our border. Guatemala long has served as a major smuggling corridor for African and Asian migrants trying to reach the U.S. The largest Guatemalan newspaper reported the activities of an international human smuggling network that moves illegal aliens from Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Bangladesh, all Muslim nations, into the U.S. One Spanish news service refers to Guatemala as a human smuggling paradise, because it is so simple to access phony passports. Our porous southern border is vulnerable to terrorists entering. Narco-terrorists bring drugs to gangs in sanctuary cities, where that poison kills hundreds of citizens. Three years ago, the Texas Department of Public Safety issued a report on gang members, including MS-13, in the Lone Star State, who infiltrate the country from Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador. The report indicated that whereas many disguise themselves as unaccompanied minor children seeking asylum, still others slip through the border undetected. “Although a large number of MS-13 members have been captured along the border, it is likely many more have successfully crossed into Texas and remain hidden from law enforcement,” the report said. If gang members can disguise themselves and slip into the U.S. at night without detection, so can terrorists. If even one or two in a caravan are Islamic terrorists intent on launching an attack inside the U.S., the price we pay for inaction with the caravans could become catastrophic. As the caravans move north, they leave garbage and human excrement along Mexican roads. The mobs claim to seek refugee asylum from violence yet privately admit they wish to grab jobs in order to send money home. The mass illegal infusion of mostly low-skilled foreign workers is a boon to big business but results in poor job growth, stagnant wages, and increased welfare costs borne by working and middle-class Americans.

LAWLESS CARAVANS. Countless women and children suffer rape at the hands of criminals infiltrating the caravans. Robberies, rapes, and assaults are common. Mexican police ignoring these crimes.

EXCELLENTLY ORCHESTRATED. Cameras absent, these walking hordes board buses and trucks carrying them north. People without Borders, a U.S.-Mexican nonprofit, has backed the caravan since its arrival in Guatemala. It was confident the caravans could stay united and reach the U.S. border. “The plan is to get to Tijuana! The fight continues, we don’t give up,” said Denis Contreras, a Honduran migrant and social activist helping to organize the caravan, with assistance from leftist Americans. The government of Honduran conservative President Juan Orlando Hernandez said leftist activists assembled a caravan to embarrass that government.

TRUMP ACTION. U.S. administrations have long used aid programs as an essential part of efforts to stabilize the countries of Central America and stem the flow of migrants leaving. However, this foreign aid has become dissipated by endemic corruption, waste, and embezzlement by government bureaucrats there. Therefore, President Trump has moved to sharply decrease aid to the region. Speaking to reporters, Trump accelerated his criticism, saying that despite getting a “tremendous amount of money” in U.S. foreign aid, Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador “like a lot of others, do nothing for our country.” Since 2015, the U.S. has given over $2.6 billion in foreign aid to these 3 nations. In 2016, the U.S. provided $131 million in aid to Guatemala, $98 million to Honduras, and $68 million to El Salvador, according to U.S. data. In 2017, aid fell to $69 million for Guatemala, $66 million for Honduras, and $46 million for El Salvador, a reduction of almost 40% for the 3 nations. Most of the funds go to violence prevention, justice and rule-of-law programs, together with funding for border and narcotics enforcement. However, U.S. foreign aid allotments for fiscal year 2019 scheduled to significantly drop. Said Trump at the White House, “We have been giving so much money to so many different countries for so long that it’s not fair and it’s not good. And then when we ask them to keep their people in their country, they’re unable to do it.” Trump personally spoke to the leaders of several Central American nations, including Honduras, where the current migrant caravans originated, and informed them that the U.S. could reconsider international financial aid programs aimed at Central America, if the outflow does not abate. The President vows to stop or substantially reduce foreign aid to these nations with unstable governments. He has declared the caravan mobs a national emergency and criticized Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador for failing to stop the caravans of illegal aliens headed for the U.S., now swelled to almost 10,000. He castigated these countries for inability to control their populations. Based on intelligence reports, he blasted the caravans for including violent criminals and Middle Eastern terrorists. President Trump also has raised the prospect of withholding U.S. assistance from Mexico. Trump threatens to end a pending free trade agreement with Mexico for not stopping the caravans. Mexico begged the UN refugee agency to help it handle the caravan masses. None of the travelers carry valid passports. Trump correctly has made these caravans a campaign issue at rallies across the nation. He correctly blames the Democrats for advocating open borders and weak immigration laws that encourage illegal entry. Trump vowed that anyone entering the U.S. illegally will face arrest and detention before deportation to their country of origin. He could consider visa sanctions, if nations do not cooperate in arranging the swift return home of those apprehended.

TRUMP MILITARY ACTION. Trump calls these caravans an assault on our national sovereignty. The President threatens to send troops to the Mexican border and close it, if the caravans threaten to cross, a prudent national security action. In an interview aboard Air Force One, Trump made clear there was no limit to the number of troops he would send to the border to address the growing migrant caravans quickly making their way through hot and humid temperatures in Mexico to the U.S. border. “Until we can have a wall and proper security, we are going to be guarding our border with the military,” Trump said during a meeting with Baltic state leaders. He already has ordered 4,000 National Guard personnel under the command and control of state governors to cooperate with the Dept. of Homeland Security to secure the border in 4 southern states to stop criminal elements and drugs from pouring in. There are currently 2,100 National Guard troops along the border in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California, according to the Pentagon. 5,200 new troops would include engineers to build border barriers.

THE ELECTIONS. Democrats hoped and prayed that the mobs would reach the border before election day, Nov. 6, and present Pres. Trump with a political crisis. If he uses the military to refuse the hordes entry, Dems can label him a cruel tyrant. If he allows them entry, his conservative base will roar with disapproval. The Dems appear guilty of colluding with foreign interests in Latin America to influence our elections by using the caravans. The national vice chairman of the Democratic Party campaigns in a T-shirt that says in Spanish “I don’t believe in borders.” Not only do Dems oppose controlling the border and stopping illegal immigration, they welcome illegal immigrants as an offset to legal American voters. Political organizers on both sides of the border brazenly coach migrants about what to say to establish a “credible fear” asylum claim and gain their release into the interior. If these sympathizers succeed, larger migrant caravans will quickly follow. Construction of a border wall, which could take years to complete, would be ineffective in preventing these organized incursions now. Meanwhile, Democratic Rep. Nita Lowey said Trump’s threat to cut foreign aid “ignores that Congress, not the president, is entrusted by the Constitution with the power of the purse.” Texas and Arizona had close Senate races. Trump decried the attack on our borders and sovereignty at a rally for Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.

MEXICO NO HELP. Trump points out the ineffective response of Mexico for not stopping these thousands from crossing its border. Large units of Mexican local and 500 federal police in riot gear first blocked a road but then retreated. Mexican police stepped aside as the masses passed. Hundreds smashed down border fencing or waded or swam across a small river, sometimes aided by sympathizers in boats. Mexican police refused to stop them. A small group of Mexican immigration personnel tried to stop the caravan and persuade members to apply for political asylum there. The caravan swept them off the road. Mexican police set up security checkpoints but detained few migrants. “Vamos!” several migrants yelled, as they walked through a checkpoint unhindered. Mexican police have backed down, allowing the migrants to continue without applying for documentation. Riot police have stopped to pose for pictures in their gear, as if ready to combat the migrants, letting international television crews film them before retreating. The officers threw their riot shields in a bus and drove away. Interior Minister Alfonso Navarrete said Mexico would not use force to stop the caravan. “They won’t be deported or repatriated,” he said. Most Mexicans are sympathetic to the migrants, so politically it becomes very difficult for the government to halt a caravan given its high visibility. Mexicans offer caravaners food, clothing, and rides in trucks and cars. “Sadly, it looks like Mexico’s Police and Military are unable to stop the Caravan heading to the Southern Border of the United States,” Trump tweeted. He requested the Mexican government to use its border laws to stop the caravans, before they try to enter the U.S. Frustrated, he tweeted that “DACA is dead.” Every day, billions of dollars in trade crosses the U.S.-Mexico border, and a Trump attempt to block those flows could inflict serious economic harm on Mexico. The Mexican government dilemma will worsen, because the incoming government of Andrés Obrador campaigned on a supportive approach to migration, vowing it would not hunt down migrants. His incoming foreign minister, Marcelo Ebrard, said that it would be a “big mistake” for the Mexican government to use its armed forces to try to stop the caravan. “It would be inadmissible in Mexico to use the army against these people,” he said. Sec. of State Mike Pompeo met with the Mexican president, his foreign minister, and the president-elect and his foreign minister, all who could not guarantee stopping the caravans.

DEPORTED SEEK RETURN. Many in the caravans previously had sneaked into the U.S., for years or decades. Now, they seek to resume employment here and take jobs from Americans. Some had returned voluntarily to home countries to avoid formal deportation. One deportee admitted being expelled 6 times.

TRUMP HAS AUTHORITY. Constitutional experts declare that President Trump has full constitutional powers, without consulting Congress, to stop this border invasion. The U.S. does not consider fleeing from poverty or gang violence as grounds for asylum. Nothing in federal law forces the President to admit problem immigrants. He enjoys inherent executive powers from Article II and delegated authority from Congress to halt this invasion. Though he cannot deport anyone without an authorizing law, he can exclude anyone immigrating. The Supreme Court said in a landmark 1950 case, “The exclusion of aliens is a fundamental act of sovereignty. The right to do so stems not alone from legislative power but is inherent in the executive power to control the foreign affairs of the nation.” This is why for the first 100 years of our country, immigration entirely rested with the State Department. The President clearly used this authority when communicating with the leader of the country of origin of this caravan, Honduras. He can shut the door and demand that legitimate asylum claims become processed through our 10 consulates in Mexico. Trump could consider visa sanctions on nations not cooperative in arranging the swift return of those apprehended. INA 212(f) allows the president, whenever he finds that “the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States,” to “suspend” all forms of immigration “for such period as he shall deem necessary.” INA 215(a)(1) grants the president an almost equal level of authority to subject entry of all aliens entering or departing to “such reasonable rules, regulations, and orders, and subject to such limitations and exceptions as the President may prescribe.” In addition, given that this is not an ordinary case of immigration or a trickle of asylum seekers but rather a mass influx, the attorney general can use U.S.C. § 1103(a)(10) to deputize local law enforcement authorities at the border that choose to participate to engage in the police powers of federal immigration officers. This section of the law states that when there exists an “imminent mass influx of aliens arriving off the coast of the United States, or near a land border,” the attorney general may “authorize any State or local law enforcement officer” to perform such duties. Such will help with the manpower and the national security component of dealing with this issue. President Trump is the only one to stop this border invasion. Whenever he forces a national debate over whether we are a sovereign nation, he gains more leverage. When he threatens to veto the next budget bill, unless it tackles sanctuary cities and asylum policies, congressional action will begin.

TAKE ACTION NOW. These caravans are the perfect symbol of the arrogant organized effort to destroy the rule of law and contempt for the American system that the Left exhibits daily. We must not allow ourselves to appear intimidated by heart-wrenching pictures and misleading words the left-wing media manufacture after this caravan arrives at our border. This invasion threatens our national sovereignty. Our President can and must stop this 3rd World invasion. Caravan members will take jobs from Nebraska citizens. They will siphon off welfare and medical services. They will send most of their income back to relatives in their home nations, cheating our economy. They do not contribute fairly to our tax revenues. Terrorists incoming will pose a national security crisis. Though presidents have significant foreign policy powers, Congress votes on and provides foreign aid, so this body must vote to greatly reduce or stop foreign aid to offending nations to our south. Releasing illegals from custody pending a judicial hearing is foolhardy, as they regularly melt into society without a trace. Only 2% of family units released from custody ever face deportation, creating an immigration magnet. Lobby your congressman to end this catch and release action, because only illegal aliens and their benefactors benefit from it. Congress must return from campaigning and close the glaring holes in our asylum and immigration laws flagrantly used to facilitate an invasion over our border. Urge your representative and 2 senators to support President Trump to close the border to these raucous caravans and refuse them entry.

Research, documentation, and analysis for this issue paper done by Nebraska Taxpayers for Freedom. This material copyrighted by Nebraska Taxpayers for Freedom, with express prior permission granted for its use by other groups in the NE Conservative Coalition Network. 10-18. C

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