Trump Proposed Shooting Migrants to Prevent Them From Crossing the Border

A new book from two New York Times reporters contains some horrifying details.

Alex Brandon/AP

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President Donald Trump once pitched fortifying the border with a snake-filled trench, creating an electrified wall with spikes, and reportedly suggested officers shoot migrants in the legs to slow them down, according to an excerpt from a new book written by New York Times reporters Julie Hirschfeld Davis and Michael Shear. 

The excerpt provides a revealing look at the internal drama within the White House as the Trump administration has aggressively cracked down on migration to the United States; White House advisers are described as being in a state of “near panic” after Trump ordered the closure of the US-Mexico border in March.

At the time, then-Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen reportedly warned in a March meeting that migrants would still try to claim asylum after crossing into the United States if Trump closed the border. In another exchange, Trump suggested the need for a cement wall, to which Nielsen reportedly responded: “I literally don’t think that’s even possible.” According to the report, the president “routinely berated Ms. Nielsen as ineffective and, worse—at least in his mind—not tough-looking enough.” Trump eventually ousted Nielsen as part of an overhaul inside his administration of other officials who White House aide Stephen Miller “believed were thwarting efforts to block immigrants.”  

“The president was frustrated and I think he took that moment to hit the reset button,” former acting director of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Thomas Homan told the Times

Read the rest of the excerpt here.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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