WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has a message to those who still seek to come to the United States illegally…there’s a new sheriff in town.
That was the message Sessions sent while appearing Tuesday on Fox News Channel’s “Hannity,” where the AG boasted of the change in status since president Trump’s inauguration.
“Can you believe that we have had the lowest number of entrances at the border in 17 years? This is the direct result of Donald Trump’s strong, clear leadership,” said Sessions.
“It has an impact. The most important thing for us is to send a message to the world that the border is not open. Please don’t come. You will be apprehended if you do come, and you will be deported promptly. And if you’re a criminal, you’ll be prosecuted. And if you assault our officers, we’re going to come at you with a ton of bricks,” he warned.
“This is the kind of message we need to send It is already being sent,” added Sessions. “It is having a dramatic effect so far. I knew strong presidential leadership unlike the wishy-washiness we’ve seen in the past would impact the flow, but not as much as we’ve seen already. The numbers are down 70 percent since President Obama left office. It is really a remarkable achievement.”
Sessions, who toured the U.S.-Mexico border Tuesday, said during a press conference after the tour that he believes Trump’s get-tough approach to immigration prosecutions will help to clean up a lot of the “filth” brought into the U.S. by Mexican drug cartels.
“This is a new era. This is the Trump era,” he said. “The lawlessness, the abdication of the duty to enforce our immigration laws, and the catch and release practices of old are over.”
Speaking of the soon-to-begin construction of Trump’s border wall between the U.S. and Mexico, Sessions said the wall will only aid in the war on drugs and crime.
“The barrier, the wall, will have a great and positive impact and will continue our ability to follow through on a commitment to end the lawlessness,” he said.
Critics blasted the initiatives touted by Sessions as racist fear-mongering and baseless in fact.
“Once again, Attorney General Sessions is scaring the public by linking immigrants to criminals despite studies showing that immigrants commit crimes at lower rates than the native born. He and President Trump are wasting more federal taxpayer dollars going after illegal border crossers instead of protecting the American public,” said Gregory Z. Chen, director of government relations for the American Immigration Lawyers Association.
Undeterred, Sessions said the tough new stance on illegal immigration will continue.
“When we talk about MS-13 and the cartels, what do we mean? We mean international criminal organizations that turn cities and suburbs into war zones, that rape and kill innocent civilians, and who profit by smuggling poison and other human beings across our borders,” Sessions said. “It is here on this very sliver of land—on this border—that we take our stand. It is a direct threat to our legal system, peace and prosperity.”