First lady Melania Trump ‘hates’ to see families separated

The Capitol is seen in Washington Friday

Her spokeswoman said that Mrs. Trump believes "we need to be a country that follows all laws", but also one "that governs with heart".

In a rare comment on policy, Mrs Trump's communications director Stephanie Grisham issued a statement on her behalf to USA news network CNN.

The White House has refused to budge on its new "zero tolerance" policy that, by referring all cases of illegal entry into the USA for criminal prosecution, splits migrant children from parents taken into custody.

On Sunday, Jesuit priest James Martin tweeted, "Like many, I've resisted using this word but it's time: the deliberate and unnecessary separation of innocent children from their parents is pure evil".

President Trump has consistently blamed Democrats for the situation, saying their support for passage of a broader immigration bill would end the separations.

Former first lady Michelle Obama just weighed in on the Trump administration's "zero-tolerance" immigration policy, and she's calling on members of all parties to wake up and take action. Laura Bush said the ongoing policy at the border "breaks her heart" in an editorial published by The Washington Post.

According to Bush, "These images are eerily reminiscent of the Japanese American internment camps of World War II, now considered to have been one of the most shameful episodes in US history". She, who after the death of her 3-year-old daughter knew what it was to lose a child, believed that every child is deserving of human kindness, compassion and love. Despite the backlash, the president has defended the policy, which went into effect in May.

They chanted "Families united!" and "Free our children now!", reported NPR.

After touring a converted Walmart supermarket that is now housing about 1,500 immigrant children, Mr Merkley said "hurting kids to get legislative leverage is unacceptable".

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You can read the complete op-ed here.

Immigration is one of the most divisive, hot-button crises plaguing the Trump administration. However, there is no law mandating the separation of families. Trump has made helping children the basis for her platform as first lady, called "Be Best".

Because the children of prosecuted migrants are not charged with any crime, they are not permitted to be jailed with their parents.

Next week, Congress is set to vote on two immigration proposals - the conservative McCaul-Goodlatte bill, and a more moderate House GOP bill.

"Let's be very clear, this is not happening because of the, quote, 'Democrat's law, ' as the White House has claimed", Clinton said in New York City.

Hurd told CNN on Saturday: "To me it makes it very clear that in the home of the free and the land of the fearless, we should not be using kids as a deterrent policy".

In a recent six-week period there were almost 2,000 family separations.

"I live in a border state", Bush said.

Mr. Dershowitz agreed that immigration reform is necessary, but noted that the president had the authority to end the controversial policy today.

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