Trump's top voter suppression adviser Kris Kobach made it crystal clear just how hollow the administration's claims of "compassion" are when it comes to young immigrants.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions offered the audacious claim, alongside a number of blatant lies, that the decision to terminate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program was the "compassionate thing to do."
Introducing sudden and dangerous upheaval into the lives of 800,000 young immigrants, as well as their friends and families — along with a catastrophic disruption to the nation's economy — is a truly bizarre definition of "compassion."
Contrary to Sessions' feeble claim of "compassion," Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach — who heads up Donald Trump's voter suppression commission and is also a paid writer for Breitbart News — made it clear how delighted the administration is to be kicking out hundreds of thousands of upstanding young people.
Speaking with Fox News' Abby Huntsman, Kobach first made sure to note that most of those affected by the termination of DACA are "not children" — which may technically be true, but ignores the usual point made that they were originally brought to the country as children, and have grown into adulthood knowing only the United States as their home.
But Kobach got even more crass from there, sneering that "if we're worried about keeping families together, then the illegal alien parents who brought them here should also be removed."
And to those young people who have built lives here, going to school and college, getting jobs, starting families?
"Congratulations!" Kobach whined. "You got a huge benefit from the American taxpayer. You got best education in the Western Hemisphere, but now it's time to go home."
HUNTSMAN: You point out the important part, the legal side of this. But there's also the emotional side. What do you do about the people that are already here? The 800,000 DREAMers? What do you do about separating families? Not everyone here is a criminal, a lot of them are just innocents, they've been living here most of their — all of their life, really. They've gone to school here. How do you balance the emotional side of this?
KOBACH: Well, let's remember, one of the things that the open borders side always says is, 'Oh, they're just children.' No, the average age — the median age is 25 of a DACA illegal alien, and they can be 36 years old and still be getting the amnesty, and they claim to have come in before the age of 16. So, first of all, they're not children.
Secondly, if we're worried about keeping families together, then the illegal alien parents who brought them here should also be removed to the home country along with the DACA recipient alien. There's nothing wrong with asking people to go home, and if they've been able to violate our laws for 10 years or more, well, congratulations, you got a huge benefit from the American taxpayer. You got best education in the Western Hemisphere, but now it's time to go home, and if you want, get in line and try to come in legally with those hundreds of thousands of your fellow countrymen who are waiting to do it the the right way.
Kobach's clear implication that undocumented immigrants are just here to leech off the country and those who were born here, to take advantage of the benefits the nation has to offer to the detriment of others, is despicable and callous.
Shortly after Sessions made the announcement about ending DACA, Trump claimed in a White House statement that he doesn't "favor punishing children," he also insisted that the move was necessary because "we are a nation of laws."
Trump also pointedly attempted to tie the issue to gang violence, despite the fact that immigrants are far less likely to commit violent crimes than people born in the United States.
And of course, Trump took pains to rant about President Barack Obama, saying that Obama's decision to implement DACA was "an end-run around Congress" that "[violated] the core tenets that sustain our Republic" — something Trump suddenly cares about when it gives him the chance to slam his predecessor, ignoring the fact that Obama's move was necessitated by the staunch refusal of most Republicans in Congress to act on immigration reform.
Sessions can talk about compassion, and Trump about the rule of law, all they want.
But Kobach's words ring loud and clear: What this administration wants is simply for every undocumented immigrant "to go home" — even if that "home" is one they have never known.