President Trump Calls Migrant Caravan A ‘National Emergency,’ Blames Democrats

President Trump on Monday called the caravan of as many as 10,000 migrants from Honduras and other Central American countries heading for the U.S.-Mexican border a “national emergency” and blamed Democrats for the march, which comes just weeks before the midterm elections.

“Sadly, it looks like Mexico’s Police and Military are unable to stop the Caravan heading to the Southern Border of the United States. Criminals and unknown Middle Easterners are mixed in. I have alerted Border Patrol and Military that this is a National Emerg[enc]y. Must change laws!” the president wrote on Twitter.

 

Trump said the Democrats are to blame if the massive mob crosses into the U.S.

“Every time you see a Caravan, or people illegally coming, or attempting to come, into our Country illegally, think of and blame the Democrats for not giving us the votes to change our pathetic Immigration Laws! Remember the Midterms! So unfair to those who come in legally,” he wrote.

 

Trump also threatened to cut off U.S. aid to the countries involved.

“Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador were not able to do the job of stopping people from leaving their country and coming illegally to the U.S. We will now begin cutting off, or substantially reducing, the massive foreign aid routinely given to them.”

 

The three countries Trump mentioned received more than $500 million in funding combined in 2017.

Over the weekend, hundreds of Central American migrants scrambled over a bridge wall and jumped into a river below as they battled to get past authorities stopping them at the Guatemala-Mexico border.

The mob swelled to at least 5,000 people — some estimates go as high as 10,000 — and once past police dressed in riot gear, they resumed their trek to the U.S.-Mexico border. The throng is currently marching toward the Mexican town of Tapachula, “10 abreast in a line stretching approximately a mile,” the Associated Press reported.

At the Suchiate River, some 700 federal p​olice officers from Mexico made no attempt to intervene as hundreds of young men dropped off the bridge into the water, then swam, floated or rafted to Mexico. They are still nearly 1,800 miles from El Paso, Texas, and Google Maps says that would take 573 hours on foot.

A day earlier, Mexican authorities halted entry to migrants on the bridge, but did allow women with small children in. By evening, the frustrated mob swept over the bridge fence and into Mexico. None were detained when they made it to land.

U.S. officials — and Trump — warned the migrants when they started the march earlier this month in Honduras.

“We are seriously concerned about the caravan of migrants traveling north from Honduras, with false promises of entering the United States by those who seek to exploit their compatriots,” the U.S. Embassy in Honduras said in a statement.

Meanwhile, Trump threatened to cut off aid to Honduras if they allow the march to continue.

“The United States has strongly informed the President of Honduras that if the large Caravan of people heading to the U.S. is not stopped and brought back to Honduras, no more money or aid will be given to Honduras, effective immediately!” Trump said on Twitter.

But Trump is taking a more pragmatic view of late and said on Saturday that he may have a solution. “We’re going to figure it out,” he said during a campaign rally in Elko, Nevada, suggesting his administration has a solution, but planned to keep that information “low key until the election.”

Still, Trump reiterated, “They’re not coming into this country.”

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