Oct 17, 2018

Axios PM

By Mike Allen
Mike Allen
1 big thing: Trump's border crisis is back

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

President Trump's signature issue is back in the spotlight less than three weeks before Election Day, with surging arrests at the border and a high-profile caravan on the way from Honduras.

Why it matters: The Trump administration's severe measures to deter border crossings don't appear to be working.

  • Roughly 4,000 Honduran migrants are now in Guatemala, heading north, NBC News reports.
  • "Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will travel to Mexico to meet with his counterparts on Friday, where plans to stop the caravan will be a 'prominent' topic of discussion," they report.
  • Trump has personally threatened aid to Honduras if they don't stop the caravan, which is no longer within its borders.

Between the lines: "Border Patrol agents arrested 16,658 family members in September, the highest one-month total on record and an 80 percent increase from July," the Washington Post reports.

  • If accurate, that's more than a 50% jump from last year, which was already an outlier.
  • "In September, U.S. Border Patrol agents apprehended more than 41,400 undocumented immigrants, up from 37,544 in August," NBC News reports.

The big picture, via Axios' Stef Kight: Even if Trump reinstated a form of family separation in an attempt to deter migrants, they would overwhelm Health and Human Services. The agency already struggles to house and care for more than 13,000 migrant children.

P.S. Nancy Pelosi yesterday: “It happens to be like a manhood issue for the president, building a wall, and I’m not interested in that..."

  • “We can’t allow him to say we’re not interested in protecting the border... That isn’t the only way to protect the border. In fact, it’s probably the worst way to protect the border.”

The bottom line: After two very abnormal years in politics, the stakes from November look increasingly familiar ... taxes, health care and immigration.

Go deeper: Trump's kids crisis gets worse

Bonus: Pic du jour

Photo: Orlando Estrada/AFP/Getty Images

Honduran migrants aboard a truck heading north in Guatemala.

  • "A migrant caravan set out on October 13 from the impoverished, violence-plagued country and was headed north on the long journey through Guatemala and Mexico to the US border."
2. What you missed
  1. "If it exists": President Trump says he wants to hear the audio used for media accounts on Jamal Khashaggi's reported execution inside the Saudi consulate in Turkey. Go deeper. ... What we know about the Khashoggi case
  2. Trump administration vs. the Fed: Larry Kudlow said that Fed Chair Jerome Powell "is having a bit of a revolution." Go deeper.
  3. Elizabeth Warren is defending the decision to release a DNA test showing she is between 1/64th and 1/1,024th Native American. Go deeper.
  4. #MeToo in India: M.J. Akbar, a junior foreign minister and renowned former journalist, resigned today after at least 20 women came forward against him with allegations of sexual harassment. Go deeper.
3. 1 🎃 thing

The direct sequel to 1978 genre-defining "Halloween" is almost here, starring Jamie Lee Curtis and Nick Castle in their original roles, and it could make a killing at the box office, Variety reports.

  • "Universal’s R-rated slasher film eyes a massive opening in the $57 million to $65 million range..."
  • “'Halloween' also looks to notch one of the best starts for an R-rated horror film, joining the company of 'It' ($123 million), 'Hannibal' ($58 million), and 'The Nun' ($53 million)."
  • "[T]here have been 11 films in the “Halloween” franchise (five of which included Curtis)."

Go deeper

Mike Allen