Tuesday, 13 November, 2018

United Methodist clergy, members file complaint against Jeff Sessions

Sessions Building a wall will end family separations at border Modal Trigger Jeff Sessions Getty Images
| 22 June, 2018, 20:01

Almost 2,000 migrant children have been separated from their parents at the border thanks to the Trump administration's controversial policy on illegal border crossings.

In a new op-ed in USA Today, Attorney General Jeff Sessions says that children who have been separated from their families have better care than American kids. A mere desire to benefit from entry to the nation does not justify illegal entry. You are not admitted to the U.S. If you make the same trip and seek legal asylum, you can make a claim of persecution for your race, ethnicity, religion or similar claim. Those in criminal proceedings are guaranteed a (now severely overworked) public defender, but those in civil immigration courts are not. Trump also eliminated an extremely successful detention alternative program for undocumented people. "While it is necessary to control the flow of immigrants and refugees into the country, the use of tactics meant to traumatize and inflict irreparable harm to children and their parents is un-American and certainly do not appear anywhere in the Bible I read".

In his op-ed, Sessions defended the policy and urged Congress to take action to reach a long-term immigration solution, even though President Donald Trump has the ability to unilaterally take action. "Seeing the news last week, especially around what's been happening at the border with families and children being torn apart and trying to think about what we can do ... we realized there is a very small and unknown and unutilized piece of church law that allows us to bring a complaint against a Methodist layperson".

That's actually in keeping with the previous administration's policy, in which children were taken away if immigration officials felt the child was in danger, or if the adult was not the child's actual parent or guardian or if the adult was charged with a crime. The figures are for people who tried to enter the US between official border crossings.

"It is painful", Sessions said. "And like a majority of Americans, we are appalled that your Zero Tolerance policy has resulted in the unnecessary trauma and suffering of innocent children".


The letter from The United Methodist Church was written on Monday and sent to the pastoral leadership at Sessions' home church in Mobile, Ala., along with his current church in Arlington, Va.

"Congresswoman Jenkins does not support forcibly separating children and their parents and believes the practice, which is not new to this Administration but has increased in volume under it, has gone on long enough", her office said in a statement.

Bolstered by President Donald Trump, some Republicans say there's no way that bias against then-candidate Trump found among some employees didn't taint the Clinton probe - and by extension special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Trump's Republican campaign and Russian Federation.

"And hopefully change his heart and lead him to not just stop doing what he is doing, but to change that and do what is right", Wright said.

White House chief of staff John Kelly said in March that the administration was considering separating children from their parents "to deter more movement" across the border.

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