Donald Trump ran a presidential campaign focused on rule of law and national border security, and newly uncovered documents signal he is looking to fulfill that pledge as president.
According to internal Department of Homeland Security documents obtained by the Washington Post, the federal agency has opened talks with local police forces on the enforcement of national immigration law, identified strategic areas where construction can begin on Trump's proposed border wall and identified some 33,000 more detention beds in which to house undocumented immigrants.
The report, which has a publish date of April 25, 2017, also outlines ways in which the agency can speed up the hiring of hundreds more Customs and Border Patrol officers, signaling the administration's desire for a more robust Immigration and Customs Enforcement unit. Options for speeding up such hiring processes outlined in the document include putting an end to physical fitness and polygraph tests.
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DHS acting spokeswoman Gillian Christensen told the Washington Post the agency would not comment on what she referred to as "pre-decisional documents."
This leaked, albeit preliminary, Trump administration plan comes after Attorney General Jeff Sessions has used his power within the Justice Department to enforce the rule of law -- recently announcing that cities and states protecting immigrant felons from federal immigration laws may lose federal DOJ grants.
"This is an administration that very much is interested in setting up that mass deportation infrastructure and creating the levers of a police state," Executive Director of the National Immigration Law Center Marielena Hincapié told the Post. "In these documents, you have more proof and evidence that they're planning to carry it out."
Congress has struggled to support funding figures behind Trump's increased immigration force, though, and the DHS document even identifies the price tag setbacks attached to some of their proposals. Where Trump called for 5,000 new Customs and Border Patrol agents and 10,000 new Customs Enforcement agents, the hiring of just 500 agents would cost a projected $100 million.
The administration reportedly put in a formal request for $1 billion in funding for 48 miles of new wall construction, an item included in Trump's 2018 budget proposal that outlined some $2 billion taxpayer dollars to be spent on the border wall this year alone.