“I’m going to have to call up more military,” Mr. Trump told reporters during a visit to San Antonio this week. “Our military, don’t forget, can’t act like they would normally act because if they got a little rough, everybody would go crazy.”
Mr. Trump’s insistence that he was still considering placing undocumented immigrants in sanctuary cities “due to the fact that Democrats are unwilling to change our very dangerous immigration laws” came in a tweet on Friday morning. That statement directly contradicted his own aides, who on Thursday had described the proposal as a “suggestion that was floated and rejected, which ended any further discussion.”
But Mr. Trump was eager to continue the discussion. If Democrats did not agree to new immigration policies, Mr. Trump told reporters at the White House on Friday, “we might as well do what they always say they want.”
“We’ll bring them to sanctuary city areas and let that particular area take care of it,” Mr. Trump continued, adding that California welcomed the idea of more people coming to the state.
“We can give them a lot. We can give them an unlimited supply,” he said.
After Mr. Trump’s comments, a White House spokesman indicated that the proposal was now back on the table, and that Democrats should work with the administration to welcome migrants into their districts.
“Democrats say we must have open borders and that illegal immigrants have a right to be in this country at all costs,” the spokesman, Hogan Gidley said, “so they should be working with the administration to find the best ways to transport those illegal aliens that are already set for release, into communities in their districts and states.”
Democratic lawmakers, however, are not advocating “open borders,” as the president has suggested. They favor enhancing border security, but do not support many of Mr. Trump’s hard-line immigration policy proposals, such as building a wall along the southern border.