KELLYANNE: Schumer, Others Owe Trump 'An Apology' Over MS-13 Remarks

April FrancisMay 18, 2018

"These aren't people. These are animals", Trump said during a California Sanctuary State Roundtable at the White House.

Trump made the comments in reference to the brutal gang MS-13.

The local officials invited for the event took turns praising his immigration policies and lamenting California's law, arguing that it was making it more hard for their communities to find and deport criminals.

On Thursday, the president defended describing immigrants belonging to MS-13 as "animals" a day earlier, when he spoke during a panel on California's immigration laws.

Mexico's foreign ministry sent a formal diplomatic letter to the U.S. state department complaining that Trump's comments were "absolutely unacceptable".

"Comparing any person to an animal, regardless of criminal record or immigration status.is an invitation to violate human rights, to hate, to xenophobic rhetoric, and that is something that can not be accepted", he told Mexican TV network Televisa.

The White House press secretary insisted that the president was only referring to MS-13 gang members, although it's clear he was speaking more broadly. She, like others, said the president and his policies were far more popular in the state than people realise.

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"I'm always pressing him to do more about the gangs and MS-13 on Long Island, and it's obviously an issue that's important to him, and a priority for the president", King said.

A headline on the homepage of The Washington Post on Thursday morning read, "Trump refers to some undocumented immigrants as 'animals.'" The story's lede said Trump had "referred to some undocumented immigrants as 'animals.'" It wasn't until the newspaper's sixth paragraph that Trump's comments were put in the full context. Trump's initial remarks were met with widespread condemnation on social media by Democratic lawmakers and activists who believed he was describing all immigrants crossing the southern border.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) scolded Trump for denying the "spark of divinity" in each person over his comments that MS-13 gang members were not people but "animals".

They were criticising legislation Govenor Jerry Brown signed into law a year ago that bars police from asking people about their immigration status or helping federal agents with immigration enforcement. "We need strong immigration laws.We have laws that are laughed at on immigration", he said. And Trump has held numerous events in recent months during which he's drawn attention to California's policies. He claimed those laws are forcing "the release of illegal immigrant criminals, drug dealers, gang members and violent predators into your communities" and providing "safe harbour to some of the most vicious and violent offenders on earth".

Trump responded directly to what Mims had just said. "We, the citizens of the fifth largest economy in the world, are not impressed".

But no law "the Democrats gave us" mandates the separation of children from their parents at the border. And in his speech announcing his candidacy in June 2015, Trump said, "When Mexico sends its people, they're not sending their best".

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