Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) on Tuesday called on President Donald Trump to suspend the separation of immigrant families along the border until Congress can work toward addressing the problem.
“The president clearly should suspend his zero-tolerance policy until Congress can act on this issue,” Collins told IJR when asked about the controversial immigration policy.
The Republican senator added that the current policy is “inhumane and inconsistent with American values to separate children from their parents unless there are extraordinary reasons to do so.”
The Trump administration has come under intense pressure, from both Republicans and Democrats, regarding its “zero-tolerance” immigration policy, which Attorney General Jeff Sessions introduced back in April.
Since then, nearly 2,000 children have been separated from their families as they try to enter the United States illegally, sparking a nation-wide uproar over the practice.
Collins is the latest Republican senator to call on the president to freeze the controversial policy as Congress works on a fix — she’s also co-signer on GOP Sen. Orrin Hatch’s (R-Utah) letter to the attorney general that calls on the department to put a halt to the Trump administration policy.
However, there is currently no clear path forward in Congress in terms of a legislative fix for the border policy. While Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) has introduced the Keep Families Together Act as a possible solution, even critics of the current policy, like Collins, have said it’s far too expansive in its reach.
“Her legislation is not the answer, it’s far too broad, it would essentially prevent arrest within 100 miles of the border, even if the person has committed a serious crime or is suspected of terrorist activities,” Collins said Sunday.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) on Monday introduced his own bill on Monday that would, among other things, prevent the separation of immigrant families along the border — but lawmakers remain hesitant to jump on board without seeing the full bill’s text.