WASHINGTON – As a crisis of migrant children separated from their families provoked national outrage, President Donald Trump said he was powerless to act through an executive order. Five days later, he did just that. The president’s abrupt about-face laid bare the administration’s capricious use of executive power as it presses forward with a crackdown on illegal immigration, first ensnaring children in its “zero tolerance” prosecution policy, then coming up with a “stopgap” reprieve in the face of global condemnation. The president who had declared as a candidate that “I alone can fix” the nation’s problems in recent weeks threw up his arms and said only Congress could solve the problem of children being separated from their parents – and then reversed course once again. What changed? Brookings Institution senior fellow Bill Galston, a presidential scholar and a Clinton White House official, described it as “classic blame shifting” in the face of mounting bipartisan criticism and amid heartbreaking tales of toddlers kept from their parents. The president, he said, was in an “unsustainable position and would like to be bailed out of it without having to admit fault.” White House officials, advocates and congressional leaders were blindsided Wednesday when word… Read full this story
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