Trump's sham executive order on family separations was just a ploy to kill bad headlines — and now he regrets even that meaningless gesture.

When outrage over Trump’s child confiscation crisis reached a fever pitch, Trump feigned compassion for the kids by signing a sham executive order that doesn’t actually protect families from being separated.

But now, Trump reportedly wishes that he hadn’t taken even that meager action — because ripping children away from their parents was playing well with his supporters.

The New York Times reports that Trump has privately “groused” to his aides that “he should not have signed the executive order” that he falsely claimed would end family separations.

And on Monday morning’s edition of CNN’s “New Day,” New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman added that Trump seemed to have been “pushed into doing something that he doesn’t necessarily want to do” when he signed the order.

“He wanted to make the TV images go away,” Haberman said. “He wanted this issue to disappear magically and quickly last week.”

After signing the executive order, Haberman said, Trump “spent the next three days watching [himself] still getting criticized because 2,000 children weren’t magically reunited with their parents, and then complaining, ‘Why did I do this in the first place?'”

“He had been telling people, before he signed this executive order, ‘My people love this,’ that he thought this was all playing really well,” Haberman said. “We are talking about the act of separating children from their parents.”

Trump’s private words, though, don’t speak nearly as loudly as his public actions. His hollow words of compassion going into last weekend were undermined by the steady stream of lies he and his administration told when they claimed they could do nothing to end family separations without Congress.

Then, when the crisis was at its zenith, Trump effectively admitted he was lying by claiming he had ended family separations with a signing ceremony.

But the executive order he signed did not end the “zero tolerance” policy that caused the separations, or deal with the thousands of children who have already been ripped away from their parents.

Almost immediately, Trump demonstrated the fraudulence of his compassion by raging about “phony stories of sadness,” and by hosting a White House event devoted entirely to demonizing immigrants as criminals.

And over the weekend, Trump explicitly called for a complete end to due process for immigrants and asylum-seekers.

“We cannot allow all of these people to invade our Country,” Trump tweeted. “When somebody comes in, we must immediately, with no Judges or Court Cases, bring them back from where they came.”

Fortunately, almost no one was fooled by Trump’s play for “compassion points,” and resistance to his cruel and racist policies remains as fierce as ever.

Published with permission of The American Independent.