Apr 8, 2019

CNN: Trump told Nielsen to reinstate family separations, deny asylum seekers entry

Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen speaks to President Donald Trump. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images

Over the past few months, President Trump has clashed with top officials — including outgoing Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen — over border security, urging them at different points to reinstate a stricter family separation policy, deny asylum seekers entry, and shut down the port of entry in El Paso, CNN's Jake Tapper reports.

The bottom line: A senior administration official reportedly told CNN, "At the end of the day, the President refuses to understand that the Department of Homeland Security is constrained by the laws."

Details: Multiple sources told CNN that Trump pushed Nielsen to separate families, even those that entered through legal ports of entry and were legal asylum seekers, because he "thinks the separations work to deter migrants from coming."

  • Trump reportedly told border agents not to let migrants into the country and to tell judges: "Sorry judge, I can't do it. We don't have room." He has repeatedly claimed that the U.S. is full and does not have room for more immigrants in recent tweets and speeches.
  • On shutting the El Paso border, Trump was warned that it would inflict negative consequences on legal trade and travel, but told officials: "I don't care."

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Mass shooting in Milwaukee: What we know so far

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett in 2012. Photo: John Gress/Corbis via Getty Images

Six people died in a shooting at the Molson Coors Brewing Company in Milwaukee Molson Coors on Wednesday, including the 51-year-old gunman, Mayor Tom Barrett told reporters at an evening press conference with local police.

Details: All of the victims worked at the brewery complex, as did the shooter who died of "an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound, police confirmed in a statement late Wednesday.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 16 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus updates: U.S. probes case with no clear links, virus hits more countries

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

The CDC said Wednesday "astute" U.S. clinicians found the novel coronavirus in a person who did not recently return from a foreign country nor knowingly have contact with anyone infected, as six more countries reported their first cases.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed more than 2,800 people and infected over 82,000 others. The number of new cases reported outside China exceeded those inside the country for the first time on Tuesday, the WHO said Wednesday. South Korea has the most, with 1,595 infections confirmed by Wednesday night. Europe's biggest outbreak is in Italy, where 453 cases have been confirmed.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 56 mins ago - Health

WHO health official leads criticism of Trump's coronavirus response

President Trump with members of the new coronavirus task force, including Vice President Mike Pence at the White House on Wednesday. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, special advisor to the director general of the World Health Organization, told MSNBC Wednesday he found "most" of what President Trump said at his briefing on the novel coronavirus "incoherent."

The big picture: As the number of confirmed cases reaches 60 in the U.S., the top health professional — who was a health policy adviser in the Obama administration — is among several leading figures, in particular, Democrats, to criticize the president for his response to the outbreak.