LOS ANGELES (CBS News/CBSLA) – President Trump claimed his administration is finalizing a plan to only allow asylum seekers to apply at designated points of entry at the border, as he continues to push immigration issues ahead of the midterm elections next week.
Currently, those who don’t go to an official checkpoint are still afforded a chance to wait for trial and make their case.
The president also said the military will not tolerate violence at the border, and any rocks thrown at the military will be treated like “weapons.” Mr. Trump said he will have some sort of executive order next week on immigration, although he offered few details.
“Migrants seeking asylum will have to present themselves lawfully at a port of entry,” the president declared. “Those who choose to break our laws and enter illegally will no longer be able to use meritless claims to gain automatic admission into our country.”
In the days leading up to Tuesday’s midterms, and as a caravan of migrants approaches the southern border, the president has ramped up his immigration rhetoric. Mr. Trump on Wednesday said he will send up, he has threatened to end aid to some Central American countries, and in an interview that Axios aired Tuesday, he said he intends to end birthright citizenship by executive order.
“Birthright citizenship is a very very important subject,” the president said Wednesday, as he was leaving for Florida. “In my opinion, it’s much less complex than people think. I think it says it very loud and clear in the Constitution that you don’t have to go through the process of whatever they’re talking about.”
“And by the way this is not a constitutional amendment — you do not need a constitutional amendment for birthright citizenship,” he told reporters. “I believe you can have a simple vote in Congress or it’s even possible, in my opinion — this is after meeting with some very talented scholars — that you can do it through an executive order.” And he added, “Now I’d rather do it through Congress because that’s permanent.”
At a military base in Arizona, Army soldiers were putting up a tent city for some of the thousands of troops being sent by Trump to the border. Six San Diego military bases will reportedly be used to assist the operation, which is now dubbed “Operation Faithful Patriot.”
The president’s continued attacks on the caravan, which continues to wind its way toward the southern border of the U.S., alarmed immigration advocates in Los Angeles.
The Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles, or CHIRLA, said the president does not have the power to change these policies on his own.
“This idea that he can unilaterally make these changes is false,” said CHIRLA Political Director Polo Morales.
CHIRLA believe Congress needs to act.