In the past six months, the Trump administration has moved to expel 300,000 Central Americans and Haitians living and working legally in the United States, disregarding senior U.S. diplomats who warned that mass deportations could destabilize the region and trigger a new surge of illegal immigration.
The warnings were transmitted to top State Department officials last year in embassy cables now at the center of an investigation by Senate Democrats, whose findings were recently referred to the Government Accountability Office. The Washington Post obtained a copy of their report.
The cables’ contents, which have not been previously disclosed, reveal career diplomats’ strong opposition to terminating the immigrants’ provisional residency, known as temporary protected status (TPS), and the possible deportation of hundreds of thousands of people to some of the poorest and most violent places in the Americas.
Then-Secretary of State Rex Tillerson dismissed the advice and joined other Trump officials in pressuring leaders at the Department of Homeland Security to strip the immigrants of their protections, according to current and former administration officials whose accounts were consistent with Senate Democrats’ findings. [Continue reading…]