Americans Finding Ways To Work Against Donald Trump Immigration Policy | Rachel Maddow | MSNBC
Uh and thanks to at home for joining us this hour we do have a little bit of news to break this, hour this segment in fact very happy to have you here tonight tonight. I promise I will hold it together better than I did last night. Because, there is nothing else going on in the world because the federal government and the Trump administration, are. Just cruising, along fine, with no problems, they have nothing better. To worry about right now they've. Decided to start something, new tonight. The Trump administration announced. Plans to merge, the, Department, of Education, and the Department, of Labor the, Department. Of Education, and the Department of Labor have. Nothing, to do with each other, so. This new reported, proposal from the Trump administration to, combine, them could. Be seen as a nicer way of saying they're, abolishing, the Labor Department or it could be seen as a nicer way of saying they're abolishing, the Education Department but I think a safe bet is that what this means is that they are abolishing, both of them this. Plan first reported, tonight by The Wall Street Journal, not yet formally, confirmed, by the White House but there's. No reason to think this isn't something they'd try no, reason to think this isn't what they'd, expect to be their next, brilliant move for a federal government that's really on a roll right now. Tomorrow. Morning mayors from all over the country big city mayors from places, like LA and Seattle. Small city mayors from places like Findlay, Ohio and, Gary Indiana mayors. From all over are going to converge first thing tomorrow morning on Tornillo, Texas, or the federal government set up that tent encampment. To house hundreds, of kids without their parents, that'll. Be first thing in the morning so that should garner a bunch of attention both in terms of national. Press tomorrow morning and. In terms of the hometown press coverage from from. The hometowns of all those mayors he'll be coming from every corner, of the country to protest what the Trump administration has, been doing to. Kids on the porter Tornillo. Texas has become a focal, point for these public objections. To, what the Trump administration has. Done because, this past week it really, was the first place. That, was identified, as a purpose-built, new, location, that the Trump administration was, setting up to, incarcerate. Kids under this new Trump administration policy. Tornillo. Texas, and that tent city were first but we have since found. Out about a whole bunch more, patience where the trumpet trumpet, ministration, is, stowing, these kids that they're taking. Last. Night in the nine o'clock hour The Associated Press broke a whole new kind of news in this scandal when, they were first to report on locations, being set up by the Trump administration specifically. For quote tender. Age kids. So, little kids toddlers, and babies. Relocations. According to the AP were already up and running to. Raymondville. To, - excuse. Me Raymondville Texas. Combs, Texas, and and Brownsville. Texas they're setting up these purpose-built. Locations. To, incarcerate, babies, and toddlers. The. AAP further reported, that another location, for babies and toddlers was. Set to be opened in a Houston warehouse. Which. The Washington Post identified, as sitting at 419. Emancipation. Avenue in Houston Texas they, planned to open that warehouse, facility, for babies and toddlers, in. Coming days again babies and toddlers being held without their parents. As. Soon as we got word. Of that, element, of the Trump administration's, policy, last night where they were secretly holding little, kids who had been seized from their mothers and fathers last, night we got this smuggled, photo, published.
In The New York Times showing, a toddler who's, about 11, or 12 months old you can see she's in diapers. Crawling. Across a brightly colored mat in a shelter that is a little kid who has been taken away from her parents and is being held at this facility alone, without them according. To The Times the person who took that photo believes that girl has been separated from her relatives for, about a month already, by. The Trump administration. The. Time said the person, who took the photo quote requested, anonymity because, he was not authorized, to release an image. That. Is about to become an important part of this story. In. New York City a reporter from local, news station New York won today. Thanked, quote people who were willing to excuse. Me people who were willing to risk, talking, confidentially. When. He tracked down yet another site, where the Trump administration has, been stowing, these kids after taking them away from their parents New, York one published, these images, of these, young girls late, at night last night being moved into and out of a facility in East Harlem in New York City New, York Governor Andrew Cuomo later confirmed, that the girls, who were spotted this facility, in New York City these, girls are among the kids who, the Trump administration has, taken from their parents they, took them off that the southern border and brought these little girls all the way to New York New. York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio later confirmed, today in a press conference outside the facility that there were in fact, 239. Girls, being held inside there the youngest nine, months old, held. Alone away from their parents but, again. That that, reporter, from that New York one story which is how we learned that 239. Of these little girls are being held alone in East Harlem, he. Thanked, his confidential, sources for the tip, write. That that's where the girls were the, tip that led to those images, and that footage and that reporting, and now that attention, and confirmation, from public officials and then. There's the New York Times as well granting, anonymity, to some unauthorized source. Who nevertheless, took. Steps to get the public one, of the first pictures of this kid not yet one year-old who, has already been alone for a month and a. Month is a long time when, your life is 11, months long so far. But. This stuff is gonna get out right. You can't do, this kind of thing quietly, you can't take literally. Thousands. Of kids, forcibly. Away from their parents including, babies and not, have the country notice. This. Is a secret that is too big to be kept I don't. Know who the source was for that picture of that toddler, in Brownsville. Texas that was sent to the New York Times but, clearly that was somebody who had access to being inside that facility, who, nevertheless chose, to get, that picture out so the press would see it so the public would see how young these kids are and.
I Don't know how New York one found out about those girls being moved in the dead of night in East Harlem after midnight last night but somebody knew and somebody. In a position to know told, a reporter and. That. Reporter, got a camera crew there and they got it out. Today. A law firm in Washington State, announced a nationwide pro, bono legal effort that will provide legal counsel free of charge to, immigration, officers who refuse to enforce the, family separation, policy. Yesterday. In the Houston Chronicle a flight attendant published a sort of anguished, essay. About what he feared might have been his own unwitting. Role in helping, the Trump administration take, these kids away from their parents quote several weeks ago I worked, two flights one to San Antonio the other to McAllen, they, were among the most disturbing flights I've ever experienced, in my career on. Board these particular flights were ice agents, and migrant, children, approximately. Four to eleven years old who, had been separated from their families he, said one of the agents admitted, to one of his co-workers and the flight crew that these indeed were kids who were being relocated, to, assigned. Camps. The. Flight attendant said that he would refuse in the future to work on any flight with children who have been separated from their families he said quote it occurred to me a few weeks later that, I might, well have been a collaborator. In their transport, since. Working those two flights the images of those helpless children have burned into my psyche the little children whose faces were full of fear confusion sadness. And exhaustion left. Me somewhat, traumatized. So. That was a a flight, attendant, publishing. That in the Houston Chronicle yesterday, we don't know what airline that flight attendant works for but. Then today American, Airlines became the first u.s. airline to say we, are not doing this we. Are not going to be a part of this policy, American. Airlines announcing. Quote while we have carried refugees, for nonprofits, and the government many, of whom are being reunited with family or friends we. Have no knowledge that the federal government has used American Airlines to transport, children who have been separated from their parents do this due to the recent immigration policy we.
Would Be extremely, disappointed, to, learn that is the case we, have therefore requested, the federal government to immediately refrain, from, using American, for the purpose of transporting children who, have been separated from their families due, to the current immigration policy, we have no desire to be associated, with separating, families or worse, to. Profit, from it. That. Was American Airlines saying we don't want to do this we do not want to profit from it we don't think you've made us do this, already, if it, turns out we have we're gonna be mad and we will not do it in the future that. Was American other airlines quickly followed suit Frontier, Airlines saying, frontier, prides itself on being a family airline, we will not knowingly, allow our flights to be used to transport migrant, children away from their families. Next. Was a statement from the CEO at United, quote at United Airlines we've been concerned about reports that, commercial airlines have been used to transport immigrant, children separated from their parents by a newly implemented, implemented. Immigration, enforcement policy. Based. On some research we have done internally. And public reports, we haven't seen evidence these children have been flown on United, aircraft but, based on our serious concerns about this policy and how it's a deep conflict, with our company's values, we've. Contacted, federal, officials to inform them that they should not transport. Immigrant children on United, aircraft who have been separated from their parents, this. Policy and its impact on children on thousands. Of children is in deep conflict, with our company's, mission and we, want no part of it. So. It's a it's, a big operation, to. Take away thousands, of kids, forcibly. From their families and then to hide them around the country, right. And the. Bigger the operation, the harder it is to keep under wraps so. Now we're at the point where we've got thousands, of kids who've been taken by the government and we're starting to see people who are either just eyewitnesses. Or who, are somehow maybe, even just peripherally. Involved in this now growing, system. We're. Seeing people who have knowledge of what's going on starting, to leak to the press starting. To make sure that pictures, and footage and audio Kate audio tapes get out. We. Have seen governor's across the country Republicans, and Democrats say there they're not going to allow any resource, of resources. For many of their States to be used to further this policy, we've. Got commercial, airlines, including the biggest ones in the country saying you will not use us for this either. Everybody. Who can opt. Out of this thing is trying to everybody. Who thinks they, might potentially be used, to effectuate. This policy, or further at some how is trying, to draw a line and say no don't put this on us. Even. If you're a federal immigration officer. Who wants to opt out of, implementing. This policy apparently, there's a law firm in Washington State that will represent you for free I. Mean. Somebody's, got. To do it as long as this is still the policy, and. It is still, the policy despite you what it what you might have heard from the president, today we'll have more on that in just a moment. But I first, in. Terms of who is carrying out this policy who is making this possible. We. Have to break a little bit of news on that subject here, right now we've, got this story exclusively. It. Came to our attention today, that. The US military has, been asked, by the Justice, Department to please send, them lawyers. Specifically. To send them lawyers at the border, lawyers. In the military are called Jags Judge Advocate General's, my dad was an Air Force Jag, we. Can report tonight that the US Justice Department has requested that the Pentagon send, active, duty Jags active, duty US military lawyers to, Texas Arizona and New Mexico to. Work as, prosecutors. For the Justice Department. Special. Unprecedented. Six-month shifts, as, quote special, assistant, US Attorney's the. Justice Department has asked the Pentagon to ship active duty military lawyers.
To The border to prosecute, people picked, up at the border including parents. Who are having their current their kids taken away from them we, have never heard of anything like this before but we, can report tonight that the Defense Department, has agreed. To this we, think unprecedented. Requests from, the Department of Justice the Defense Department confirmed that after we inquired, with them about. Emails. That we have obtained that, apparently, have been sent out to active duty Jags. Quoting. From these emails that we've obtained quote an urgent, request DoD. Has directed the Armed Services to. Support the Department, of Justice by providing 21, attorneys, to prosecute, immigration, crimes in u.s. district, courts that means federal courts for, six months in the following six cities Yuma Arizona Los, Cruces New Mexico El, Paso Texas Del Rio Texas Laredo, Texas and McAllen, Texas the. Justice Department has apparently told the Pentagon quote, we are looking for litigators, with general, courtroom experience and will provide basic, trained at the US Attorneys offices on immigration, crime and federal, criminal procedure. Again. Remember these are military. Lawyers, who, are being asked to do this military lawyers don't necessarily, practice in federal court at all let. Alone on immigration law but apparently. Don't worry they're gonna get a little bit of basic training and then they'll get right in the courtroom, but. The duration, of the details meaning, that detail. In the military sense we're detailing you to the specific place the. Duration of the details will be six months assisting, Department of Justice while we staff up with permanent assistant, US attorneys the, focus of this work will be violations, of eight US Code sections, 1325. And 1326. Which. Is that statutes, for crossing, the border illegally. So. Again we we obtained these emails today which. Is the first indication we had seen anywhere, that. This was happening active-duty. Military lawyers. Being put on this what. It's. It's all it's the first time we've ever heard of the Pentagon directing active duty military lawyers, to instead go work for the Justice Department prosecuting, normal, domestic immigration. Cases. After. We questioned, the Pentagon, about these emails which appeared to indicate this directive, the Pentagon in fact confirmed to us tonight that this is happening, telling. Us quote the Secretary, of Defense has approved, a Justice. Department request. To detail 21 attorneys with criminal trial experience to, the Department of Justice for a period of 179. Days, the. DoD attorneys will be appointed as special assistant US, attorneys and will work full-time assisting, in prosecuting reactive. Border, immigration, cases but. They will focus on misdemeanor improper. Entry and felony, illegal, reentry cases. So. There. Was no advance notice that, the military was doing this before they put this into effect only.
After We asked about it tonight did they confirm that it is happening now. I should, tell you what this means from a like. A civilian. Perspective, a citizenship, perspective, what this means among, other things is that. The military, budget the. Defense budget which, pays for you know bombs and guns and ammo and all that stuff and the salaries of active duty military personnel, the. Military, budget is by. This program, effect. Being repurposed. And diverted, into Jeff, sessions is Department of Justice to help him handle this new huge. Backlog, of immigration, prosecutions. That they've just created because of the Trump administration policy. For. Which they apparently made no plans in, terms of how they were actually going to implement it they didn't bother to staff up more. Prosecutors. To do this kind of prosecuting, work they just decided that they'd start prosecuting everybody. Wholesale. With. No plan for who would actually do the work so now the military is helping them out. Active. Duty I, mean. To be clear these military, lawyers are not being assigned to represent parents. Who had their kids taken away or kids who had their parents taken away these military, lawyers are being assigned to the Justice Department to prosecute, those families. Legal. Representation for the families, themselves. For the parents and for the kids, that's. Not something where the US military, is being asked to take up the slack know. That that's more of a gofundme situation. A, few days ago a California, couple with a two-year-old daughter, they, were moved for obvious reasons by this now infamous photo of a two-year-old girl screaming and crying for her mother and emphatically, not being held by her mother as her mother interacts with immigration authorities those. Parents, in California, decided to start a fundraiser on Facebook to try to help little. Girls like that in a very specific way. The. Reason this crisis has happened on the border in a technical sense is because President, Trump has decreed, that all, people, all these people crossing the border should be prosecuted. And that is their justification. For taking away their kids but. If you're being prosecuted in, federal court, in the United States even if it's from for some new harebrained half thought through policy. You. Get due process, American. Courts give you due process, and part. Of getting due process, is that the court can decide that while you are facing prosecution, you.
Can Get bail at. The courts discretion, you can pay a specific out a month a specific, amount money set by the court and if. You post that bail you can effectively, be set free on your own recognizance with, the promise that you'll only get that bail money back if you show up for your court hearing that's, how it works in American courts thank you Constitution. The fundraiser, that this California, couple started was based on the simple idea that, somebody. Should pay the bail money, for. These parents who. Have had their kids taken away because they've been arrested or now being prosecuted for, having crossed the border while. They are awaiting trial on those charges. Conceivably. If somebody could pay the bail for the parents those parents could, get out ahead, of their court date with a promise, to return but, while they are out they, could then go get their kid. California. Couple decided to try to raise. $1,500. Thinking that might be reasonable. Bail amount maybe to expect, for a single, parent who, came up in court after being charged because of this new Trump administration policy, they set their initial goal at raising fifteen, hundred dollars as of tonight they have raised almost fifteen, million, dollars, look. More. Than three hundred and fifty thousand, people have donated a couple. Who started the fundraiser say that they had sustained. Periods, today, of, people, giving more than ten thousand, dollars a minute. That. Money will go to the refugee, and immigrant center for education, and legal services lawyer. From that nonprofit. Is somebody who Chris Hayes just spoke to at the end of his show last hour it's, a local nonprofit in Texas that provides free. Or low-cost lawyers, to immigrants and refugees in, Texas is a very bare-bones operation they, have this is their organization, they have lawyers who, work with immigrants. Who need legal representation and then, they've got one. Other person who works at the agency, who's, in charge of raising funds their Development Director well. Thanks.
To This Facebook, fundraiser in four days that. Development Director now has a new 15 million dollars to contend with the. Nonprofit, says that with this influx of support they are pursuing a simple. Plan they're. Going to work with other, groups who do the same kind of legal representation they, do and their, plan their goal is to, locate every, single family every single kid the Trump administration has, done this too they. Want to locate. Every single one of these separated, families and their kids and they, want to get every one of those families every, one of those kids a lawyer, and, then. They want to get them released. This. Is the plan for that, you need bill money for that you need organization, for that you need people. Who know the lay of the land people, who can work the system it's, that's. What, they're gonna try to do if. You are wondering whether or not having a lawyer is an important factor here the Washington. Post also reports, tonight that as the Trump administration was. Ramping, up this new policy to start taking all these kids away from their parents last, month late last month they. Quietly, killed, a federal grant program that, used to pay for legal, representation for kids held alone in government custody there, used to be a federal grant program so kids held alone could, get lawyers, Trump. Administration quietly. Killed, it last month as they were ramping, up this, policy, to start taking thousands of kids away so they could incarcerate them alone, and. So. Now Americans. Are trying to piece it together themselves. That. Refugee, and immigrant Center in Texas someone that's the beneficiary, of that fundraising, effort they say they have been also, in, addition to the the, fund raising they have been overwhelmed, by the number of people calling them to volunteer quote. It, is not just the funding we are getting literally thousands, of people contacting. Us wanting to volunteer many, are like all, come to Texas. Which. Is great. But. If you, are looking for the kids who have already been taken away from their parents yes, some of them are in Texas but they are also now all over the, country. You. Don't have to go to Texas they might be in your town. The. Day after Trump was inaugurated there was the women's March probably. The largest protest, in US history DC. In New York and Chicago but also all over the country you might, also remember that, exactly. One week after that there, were big protests, at airports, and also at courthouses all over the country when Trump issued his first attempt at a Muslim, ban executive, order he, issued this Muslim ban executive order he also revoked, a hundred thousand visas for people who had already been legally admitted to the country that. Night people started getting held at airports, after their planes landed, even though they were legally, allowed to be here. When. The michael wolf book fire and fury came out Steve Bannon was quoted in that book as saying how much he loved those Airport protests, how, those protests, were by his disease, because. The Muslim ban executive, order was deliberately, designed and timed, to. Provoke, people to make people protest, because. He thought it made the protesters look terrible, and it made Trump look great because. He was so sure that Americans. Hate, immigrants. That much. The. Snow flakes would show up at the airports in a riot that's why we did it. He. May have loved it but. Among the people who flooded to those airports on that that. First weekend. After, Trump was inaugurated among. The people who showed up at those airports were tons of lawyers with their laptops. In their handwritten signs we will represent you and. However. Delighted. Steve Bannon might have been with the timing, and the deliberate. Offensiveness, of that executive order and how much it upset people you, know what those, people protesting, and those lawyers won. They, got a restraining order against, that policy, that very first weekend that the Trump administration tried, to put it in effect and every, subsequent iteration, of that policy has been stopped in the courts thus far, it's. Not done but they've stopped at this long. And. This. Is less remembered, at a national, scale but I also want to tell you that ten days after those airport protests, this, was Phoenix Arizona, it's. A mom with American, kids who'd been here in this country for decades. Deported. One of the first people to believe, to be deported under the newly aggressive, anti-immigrant.
Trump. Deportation, policy people in Phoenix that night staking. Out the local Border Patrol facility ultimately. Chaining, themselves together laying, down in front of the van that was going to take that woman away from her family and her friends here they're trying to physically, block that deportation. The. President, today declared, that. The family separation, policy won't go on any longer but his administration, soon clarified, explicitly. That. They're still keeping the kids the. Thousands, of kids who have already been taken from their parents thus far are not going to be grandfathered, in and released back to their families now that he's canceled the policy going forward, so. There's, still no plan to reunite the kids they've already taken with, their moms and dads the government is taking no responsibility for, doing that. And. That means, what. Is ultimately, go to end. What. Trump has done. With. These thousands, of kids who are spread out all over the country right now tonight, without their moms and dads what's ultimately going to end it is going. To be local. Activism and local advocates, putting. These families back together, and. And. Yes a lot of this is happening on the, on the border in in Texas in Arizona in New Mexico but, they have spread these kids quietly, out all over the country which. Means there is a, locus, for activism and mobilization and getting resources these kids and their, parents in states all over, the country in a, secret shelter that's probably not too far from where you live and which, is probably soon to be leaked to your local paper, there. Are dissenters, and. Anonymous. Sources and people. Who do not want to be collaborators, in this everywhere. And. This is their time. Hey. There I'm Chris Hayes from MSNBC thanks, for watching MSNBC, on YouTube, if you want to keep up to date with the videos we're putting out you can click subscribe just below me or click over on this list to see lots of other great, videos.