President Donald Trump’s move to build a wall along the border of Mexico and the United States, as well as his Friday orders to stop the flow of refugees until they receive more vetting have been met with cheers from customs and border agents.
“Morale amongst our agents and officers has increased exponentially,” reads a joint statement from the National Border Patrol Council and National ICE Council, a union that represents both.
“The men and women of ICE and Border Patrol will work tirelessly to keep criminals, terrorists, and public safety threats out of this country, which remains the number one target in the world–and President Trump’s actions now empower us to fulfill this life saving mission, and it will indeed save thousands of lives and billions of dollars,” it read.
To many protests on Saturday and Sunday, Trump signed the orders to bar citizens of Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia, or Yemen from entering the country for 90 days, effective immediately on Friday. He also suspended the U.S. refugee program for about four months.
The American Civil Liberties Union slammed Trump’s order, saying it was essentially a “Muslim ban.”
“We’re really in a crisis mode, a constitutional crisis mode in our country, and we’re going to need everyone,” National Immigration Law Center, Marielena Hincapie, told CBS. “This is definitely one of those all-hands-on-deck moments.”
Hundreds, or possibly thousands, of protesters took to the streets and airports to protest Trump’s recent action. In New York, a federal judge issued an order Saturday night that temporarily blocked the federal government from deporting people with valid visas.
An official with the Department of Homeland Security told CBS that 109 people who were in transit on airplanes had been denied entry, while about 173 were not allowed to get on their planes in other countries.
In a statement, DHS wrote that it will “continue to enforce all of President Trump’s Executive Orders in a manner that ensures the safety and security of the American people.”
“Approximately 80 million international travelers enter the United States every year. Yesterday, less than one percent of the more than 325,000 international air travelers who arrive every day were inconvenienced while enhanced security measures were implemented. These individuals went through enhanced security screenings and are being processed for entry to the United States, consistent with our immigration laws and judicial orders,” it added.