A Senate report Published Thursday reveals that President Donald Trump ignored the recommendations of the State Department officials not to cancel the Temporary Protection States of El Salvador, Hairí and Honduras, to avoid humanitarian damage that would affect some 400,000 undocumented immigrants, some of them with More than two decades living in the United States.
The report, delivered by Democratic senators, It contains dozens of internal documents from the State Department that show “ways” in which government officials used “political considerations” so that the White House does not renew the TPS of the three countries.
Senator Robert Menéndez, the highest-ranking Democrat in the House of Foreign Affairs Committee, asked the State Department Inspector General to investigate what he defined as “the politicization of TPS determinations by senior political officials in the State Department, as well as the role of presidential adviser Stephen Miller. ”
Miller is one of Trump's main advisors and one of the artifacts of zero tolerance immigration policy, which includes forced separations of families at the border and severe restrictions on asylum and refugee policies.
The report denounces that senior officials at all levels of the State Department (under the command of the then Foreign Minister, Rex Tillerson) and three US embassies, "extensively documented the seriousness of the humanitarian consequences of terminating TPS designations for El Salvador, Honduras and Haiti. "
Officials explicitly warned that, if protection was canceled, “hundreds of thousands of TPS recipients and their US citizen children would be vulnerable to recruitment by violent transnational criminal organizations, and that criminal gangs, such as the Mara Salvatrucha MS-13, It could be strengthened by expanding its membership. ”
Senators add that among the warnings, diplomatic officials warned the president that "these security risks would force many TPS recipients to leave their children in the United States, which would amount to a new wave of de facto forced family separation."
"However, the Trump administration proceeded recklessly, regardless of the potential impact on American families or the life and safety of nearly 400,000 TPS recipients, and an estimated 273,000 US citizen children," the report said.
Diplomats also warned the president that ending the TPS designations for the three countries "would likely provoke a new wave of irregular migration in the region," but that the president finally proceeded to expire protections "at the potential expense of his own objective. declared, to end unauthorized immigration ”, one of its main campaign promises.
"The report documents something that we have already seen on several occasions, that the government repeatedly uses our country's foreign policy to promote the president's political goals over our interests as a nation," said Menendez.
The senator from New Jersey added that “the imprudence and moral emptiness of his anti-immigrant agenda knows no limits. In its frantic attempt to strip almost 400,000 people of humanitarian protections, the Administration was willing to play with our national security and the safety of TPS beneficiaries and their American children. ”
The TPS of El Salvador, Haiti and Honduras were canceled by Trump last year, but a federal court in California reinstated the programs arguing that the government proceeded to arbitrarily cancel them and disregarding the damage it causes thousands of migrants with American children. .
Last week the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the extension for one year of TPS benefits for Honduras and Nicaragua, while the courts resolve the legal debate, which could reach the Supreme Court of Justice in 2020.
The Senate report, entitled "Politicizing humanitarian protections," included a compilation of more than 80 pages of internal communications – including US embassy cables and internal memoranda – which led President Trump to cancel TPS designations for El Salvador. , Honduras and Haiti.
The documents contain specific instances of officials with political positions of the government in the State Department, where they make explicit reference to the presidential elections of 2020 in their recommendations to Secretary of State Tllerson.
They demand research
Menendez said he had sent a letter to the State Department Inspector General, Steve Linick, “requesting that he immediately open an investigation to determine the extent to which electoral calculations played a role in TPS decisions, as well as any coordination between political officials and ç White House officials, including Miller. ”
The report also reveals the following findings:
- There were electoral considerations about the 2020 elections in the decision to end the TPS for El Salvador, Honduras and Haiti;
- The government announced the termination of the TPS for the three countries after intentionally ignoring the risks to U.S. national security priorities;
- In recommending the end of TPS, government officials knew that TPS beneficiaries, and any of their accompanying American children, would face crimes and violence if they were repatriated to El Salvador, Honduras and Haiti;
- At the end of the TPS for the three countries, the Trump Administration made a decision knowing that it could accelerate irregular migration to the United States.