The top Republican on the House subcommittee responsible for funding the Department of Homeland Security demanded that the Trump administration end its forced separation of parents and children at the US border, going further than many of his congressional colleagues in his demands.
Because of those fraudulent claims, Nielsen said, the United States faced a backlog with hundreds of thousands of cases.
"If you commit a crime, police will take you to jail regardless of whether you have a family", Nielsen told a gathering of law enforcement officials in New Orleans.
"This administration did not create a policy of separating families at the border", she said, adding that adults are investigated at the border for links to human trafficking and to see if they are biologically related to the children they are accompanying. But the president has repeatedly blamed Democrats, citing an unspecified law that he says requires children to be taken from parents who cross the border illegally.
"What the administration has made a decision to do is to separate children from their parents to try to send a message that, if you cross the border with children, your children are going to be ripped away from you", she said.
As of Monday morning, though, Trump was back on Twitter himself and, though he didn't address Nielsen's comments directly, he did address the issue but in the most horrendous way, continuing to blame Democrats. "We don't want what is happening with immigration in Europe to happen with us!" "If you smuggle aliens. we will prosecute you". Last week Sessions raised the bar for asylum claims, saying applicants could no longer claim domestic abuse and gang violence as reasons for seeking asylum.
The Attorney General directed United States Attorneys on the Southwest Border to prosecute all amenable adults who illegally enter the country, including those accompanied by their children, for 8 U.S.C. § 1325 (a), illegal entry.
After a tour of the border facilities, Merkley and Van Hollen described in an interview with CNN "large pens of chainlink fences" holding about 1,500 migrant children and parents separated from their children after fleeing violence in Central America.
Outrage at the administration's new "zero tolerance" crackdown at the border reached a new peak over the weekend, as protesters rallied outside a tent camp for migrant children in El Paso, Texas, and several prominent Republicans joined Democrats in denouncing the policy as callous and cruel.
That's from WaPo, which reported in the same piece that Trump is known to tell aides that Nielsen's "not tough enough" and that she's a "Bush person". She framed the issue as anyone who votes against their preferred policy is voting against the "rule of law".
Nielsen's in fine form here, though, hitting all the major points on the policy's behalf. "It is time to fix it", Nielsen said.