President Trump Signs Executive Order Ending Migrant Family Separations At Border

President Donald Trump signed an executive order Wednesday that ends the administration’s policy of separating migrant families crossing the U.S.-Mexico border, abandoning the president’s previous stance that only Congress can fix the problem.

“I didn’t like the sight or the feeling of families being separated,” the president told reporters in the Oval Office, flanked by Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and Vice President Mike Pence. “I think anybody with a heart would feel strongly about it. We don’t like to see families separated.”

Trump said that he wanted to continue enforcing a strong policy at the border, an issue he campaigned on: “We are keeping a very powerful border and it continues to be a zero tolerance. We have zero tolerance for people that enter our country illegally.”

First lady Melania Trump and first daughter Ivanka Trump felt “very strongly” about ending the separation of immigrant families who tried to cross the border into the United States, President Trump said Wednesday as he signed an executive order ending a practice that has provoked widespread outrage.

“Ivanka feels very strongly, my wife feels very strongly about it, I feel very strongly about it,” Trump said. “I think anybody with a heart would feel very strongly about it,” he said.

Ivanka thanked her father on Twitter after he signed the executive order for “taking critical action ending family separation.”

Sources explain that the executive action by Trump could be seen to run afoul of the 1997 order and would likely draw a lawsuit. But the White House wants to try to take steps to uphold the enforcement of the law, while at the same time lessening the trauma of children being separated from their parents.