Sessions' Defense of Immigrant Family Separations Draws Fire

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions speaks on immigration policy and law enforcement actions at Lackawanna College in downtown Scranton Pa. on Friday

Sessions' Defense of Immigrant Family Separations Draws Fire

"As members of the United Methodist Church, we deeply hope for a reconciling process that will help this long-time member of our connection step back from his harmful actions and work to fix the damage he is now causing to immigrants, particularly children and families", the letter states.

A top Trump official at the Department of Health and Human Services confirmed Tuesday that the government expected the policy to act as a deterrent.

Speaking at the National Sheriffs' Association conference in New Orleans, the United States Attorney General admits that splitting up families is a result of Trump's mission to "end the lawlessness at our southern border".

Advocates of the separations are arguing that hundreds of children are taken from parents who commit various crimes across the U.S. on a daily basis.

"It is painful", Sessions said.

The United Methodist Church is the third-largest religious denomination in the US, with over 7 million lay members.

Lawrence told UMNS that he was "not aware of any circumstance in 50-year history of The United Methodist Church when a complaint against a lay person moved beyond the stage of its resolution by a district superintendent or a pastor".

Asked a second time about the policy June 18, Sanders said, "I think any evangelical that - or in any church for that matter - that feels strongly, they should open up their doors and help facilitate some of these individuals". It is not yet clear if they plan to present a formal legal challenge against the policy.

Democratic state attorneys general urged Sessions in a letter Tuesday to "immediately" end the policy and the practice of separating children from their parents, warning it could violate the law and Constitution.

Justice Department spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores declined to comment directly on the church charges against Sessions. Roberts said that although he firmly supports enforcing immigration law, "I am against using parental separation as a deterrent to illegal immigration". The document listed immorality, racial discrimination and child abuse among the charges.

If caught, everyone is detained, families are separated and can seek asylum only after prosecution. "If we are to live the values we proclaim we can not let President Trump and Attorney General Sessions continue to break up families and separate children from their parents", said Attorney General Herring.

It was yet another phase of Mr. Sessions' unpredictable tenure, in which he has regularly been at odds with President Donald Trump, his former Senate GOP colleagues or both, even as he pursues a tough-on-crime agenda that is largely in line with many conservative goals.

Administration officials have flatly denied that characterization. "We give them meals and we give them education and we give them medical care".

At the White House on Monday, DHS Secretary Nielsen defended the policy and said "loopholes" in the current system were driving people to attempt to come to the U.S. "There are videos, there are TVs".

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