Sunday 21 January 2018


U.S. President Donald Trump’s presidential campaign on Saturday issued a new attack ad tying Democrats to murders committed by illegal immigrants, hours into a government shutdown partly triggered by an impasse over immigration.
The Trump campaign released the 30 second ad, titled “Complicit,” on the anniversary of the Republican president’s inauguration.
U.S. President Donald Trump, flanked by U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Representative Steny Hoyer (D-MD), holds a bipartisan meeting with legislators on immigration reform at the White House in Washington, U.S. January 9, 2018.
It focuses on an undocumented immigrant, Luis Bracamontes, charged in the 2014 killings of two police officers in Sacramento, California. The man’s lawyers had questioned his sanity but a judge found him mentally competent to stand trial, according to a report last week in the Sacramento Bee.
“Democrats who stand in our way will be complicit in every murder committed by illegal immigrants,” the ad says.
The new ad is likely to anger Democrats and immigration advocates and could inflame tensions over the issue on Capitol Hill, where Democrats and Republicans were working through the weekend to reach an agreement that would reopen the government.
A news release announcing the ad blamed Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer for the shutdown, accusing him and Democrats of “holding lawful citizens hostage over their demands for amnesty for illegal immigrants.”
In a statement to CNN, Michael Glassner, the executive director of Trump's re-election campaign committee, said the ad was intended to highlight "the stark contrast between 'complicit' Democrats and the President for his full commitment to build a wall and fix our border to protect Americans from drugs, murder and other atrocities."
Schumer’s spokesman said in an email, “This is a shameless attempt by the president to distract from the Trump shutdown. Rather than campaigning, he should do his job and negotiate a deal to open the government address the needs of the American people.”
“It’s a campaign ad, which tend to be extreme, but this is completely divorced from reality and full of fear and hate,” said Melanie Nezer, vice president of the refugee agency HIAS.
Trump has seized on crimes committed by undocumented migrants in the past to justify his hardline ant-immigration policies—in December decrying the acquittal of migrant Jose Ines Garcia Zarate for the killing of Kate Steinle.
Politifact noted last year that there is no national database of crimes committed by undocumented migrants, but while the number of undocumented immigrants in the U.S. tripled between the 1990s and 2013, violent crime declined 48% and property crime fell 41% over the same period. Several studies have concluded that immigrants, both undocumented and legal, commit fewer crimes than Americans born in the country. One study in criminology found that "violent crime rates tended to decrease as metropolitan areas experienced gains in their concentration of immigrants." 
According to Pew Research, in 2015 there were 11 million undocumented migrants in the U.S.
Trump filed for re-election the day he took office, an unusual move that has allowed him to begin campaigning long before the November 2020 election. Historically, incumbent presidents have waited two years, until after the midterm elections, to file formally.
On Friday, most Senate Democrats opposed a bill that would have avoided the shutdown, because their efforts to include protections for hundreds of thousands of mostly young immigrants, known as Dreamers, were rejected by Trump and Republican leaders.
The Dreamers were brought illegally into the United States as children, and given temporary legal status under a program started by former President Barack Obama. 

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