An underlying theme of the meeting was the inability of current laws to do the job of protecting the public from savage, relentless MS-13 gangsters. A big problem is the situation where illegal aliens can show up and lie saying they are seeking asylum, and the government has to let them in — which is no way to run a border.
Many of these young men are illegal aliens from El Salvador who end up in local high schools which they then terrorize. That’s how the two teenaged girls were killed on overrun Long Island whom President Trump highlighted in his State of the Union speech.
After welcoming all the participants in the meeting by name, the president sketched out the problem:
PRESIDENT TRUMP: MS-13 recruits through our broken immigration system, violating our borders. And it just comes right through — whenever they want to come through, they come through. It’s much tougher now since we’ve been there, but we need much better border mechanisms and much better border security. We need the wall; we’re going to get the wall. If we don’t have the wall, we’re never going to solve this problem. And I’ve gone to the top people. Many of these people are at the table right now, including this group. And without the wall, it’s not going to work.You can read the whole White House transcript of the event: Protecting American Communities from the Violence of MS-13, February 6, 2018
During my State of the Union, I called on Congress to close the immigration loopholes that have allowed this deadly gang to break so easily into our country. My administration has identified three priorities. We went through and looked very closely. We’ve identified three priorities for creating a safe, modern, and lawful immigration system: securing the border, ending chain migration, and cancelling the terrible visa lottery.
We’ve been discussing it, we’ve been talking about it. We’re talking about it in Congress. We’re talking about DACA and how we can work that out. And I think the Democrats don’t want to make a deal, but we’ll find out.
As Congress considers immigration reform, it’s essential that we listen to the law enforcement professionals in this room today. . .
SECRETARY NIELSEN: Yes, Mr. President, thank you for hosting this roundtable today on MS-13. As you know, it’s the first gang dangerous enough to be classified as a transnational criminal organization.
We’ve talked at length of the devastating destruction and violence that it causes in our communities, and we’re here today to hear form a variety of folks who work every day to combat this.
First, I’d just like to say it’s my privilege to be here with the men and women of DHS and DOJ who make it their job every day to fight this and other violence coming across our borders, and also, to be joined by members of Congress who have shown great leadership. We thank you for that and always for your support of DHS and DOJ. So thank you all.
In your recently announced framework, as you know, you asked Congress to close loopholes that you just talked about. So when we talk about MS-13, we have two or three main loopholes.
The first is, we have an inadmissibility problem, meaning that when they come to our border, I have to let them in. I cannot keep them out by virtue of them being in a gang. Once we catch them and detain them, I cannot remove them by virtue of them being in a gang.
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