President Donald Trump announced Saturday that he would delay the White House’s plans to begin mass raids Sunday against undocumented families.
Sharing the news on Twitter, the president said that “at the request of Democrats” the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE) would delay its plans to seek out people with deportation orders.
Trump said he had approved the delay so that Democrats and Republicans in Congress could work out a new immigration compromise — a deal that has so far long eluded the president and his allies. Trump said the deal would have to solve “the Asylum and Loophole problems at the Southern Border.”
He noted that if Congress was unable to strike a deal, “Deportations start!”
The roundups were expected to take place in several cities across the United States and target more than 2,000 family members living in the United States, sources familiar with the matter previously told NBC News.
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi spoke out against the planned immigration raids on Saturday and faith-based leaders and community organizations to “call upon the President to stop this brutal action which will tear families apart and inject terror into our communities.”
“Families belong together,” she added. “These families are hard-working members of our communities and our country. The President’s action makes no distinction between a status violation and committing a serious crime. It is important that the President and our immigrant communities know that they have rights in America.”
The leaders of major cities across the United States, from Los Angeles to New York, protested the order on Friday after ICE acting Director Mark Morgan confirmed the plan on Friday.
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said she had gone so far as to order the city’s police department to remove ICE access from the city’s databases related to federal immigration enforcement activities.
“Chicago will always be a welcoming city and a champion for the rights of our immigrant and refugee communities,” the mayor said.
*see full story by NBC News