Politics

Trump considers ban on Central American asylum seekers in push to make elections about hate and fear

ALEXANDRIA, VA - AUGUST 16: U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to the media before departing on Marine One to travel to New York, at the White House on August 17, 2018 in Washington, DC. Trump will attend a fundraiser in West Hampton Beach, New York. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Donald Trump is dialing up the hatred and fear with a proposal to ban Central American asylum-seekers from crossing the border. It would basically be a Muslim ban but for Hondurans and Guatemalans fleeing violence in their home countries.

Under U.S. law, foreign nationals fleeing persecution have the right to apply for asylum once they reach American soil, but the executive order under consideration would suspend that provision and bar Central Americans as a matter of national security, according to those familiar with the proposal.

This is ostensibly in response to a caravan of asylum-seekers, many of them children and their parents, that’s still nearly 1,000 miles away and dwindling, but really it’s about trying to win elections through bigotry:

During the final stretch of every campaign since his presidential effort began in 2015, Trump has always returned to the topic of immigration, launching an angry, nativist appeal at his core supporters.

Rep. Beto O’Rourke asked the right question in response to Trump’s (and Ted Cruz’s) efforts to make fear of brown people trump all other issues: “Do you want to be motivated by fear, paranoia—or are we the big, bold, confident country that I know us to be?” 

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