Closing down the U.S. border's ports of entry will just cut off "lawful trade and travel," doing "absolutely nothing" to curb the illegal immigration crisis, according to a former acting director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement on Monday.
"Central Americans . . . their goal is to simply this: get two feet on American soil; the overwhelming majority of them are actually crossing the border illegally, so they're not going through ports of entry," former Obama administration Acting ICE Director John Sandweg told CNN's "Newsroom."
"Once they get their two feet on American soil, of course, they file their asylum claims. We have a process that has worked for decades to deal with that, we just haven't dedicated the resources necessary to process these numbers of people efficiently or quickly, so it's taking years, thus further incentivizing more to come.
"But what's going on at the ports of entry is just lawful trade and travel."
Sandweg did acknowledge President Donald Trump does gain leverage in pressuring Mexico to close their southern border, but the economic risks are high.
He said: "$650 billion in trade with Mexico threatened, and it's going to do nothing, absolutely nothing to stop the flow of Central Americans into this country."
The overwhelmed Department of Homeland Security cannot handle the mass migration the United States is now seeing, Sandweg admitted, so migrants know getting two feet on American soil will protect them in claiming asylum under current law.
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