Melania Trump has been pressing the president to do 'anything he could' to end family separations at the border

  • First lady Melania Trump privately encouraged her husband to end the systematic separation of migrant families who have crossed the US-Mexico border.

  • Melania's spokeswoman said the first lady urged Trump to either work with Congress on a legislative solution to the issue or do "anything he could do on his own" to end the practice.

  • All four of the first lady's predecessors have publicly condemned the separation of migrant children from their parents under the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" policy.

First lady Melania Trump encouraged her husband to end the systematic separation of migrant families who have crossed the US-Mexico border under his administration's "zero tolerance" immigration policy, the first lady's spokeswoman said Wednesday.

Over the last few days, Melania has had several private conversations with President Donald Trump about the issue, which has gripped the country and saturated the news media, pressing Trump to find a way to keep migrant families together.

The first lady urged the president to work with Congress on a legislative solution to the issue or do "anything he could do on his own" to end the practice, Melania's spokeswoman, Stephanie Grisham, told The Wall Street Journal.

Melania waded into the deeply controversial policy debate earlier this week when she issued a statement in which she pressed the US to govern "with heart" and called for bipartisan immigration reform.

"Mrs. Trump hates to see children separated from their families and hopes both sides of the aisle can finally come together to achieve successful immigration reform," Grisham said. "She believes we need to be a country that follows all laws, but also a country that governs with heart."

The first lady's statement was echoed by Trump, who said he "hates" to see migrant children separated from their parents and is has pressured Congress to craft a fix.

Melania was joined by all four of her living predecessors — Michelle Obama, Laura Bush, Hillary Clinton, and Rosalyn Carter — in condemning the policy. In a very rare statement, former first lady Laura Bush wrote in an op-ed in The Washington Post earlier this week that the practice, which she blamed the administration for implementing, is "cruel," "immoral" and "breaks my heart."

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