A White House spokesman left often the possibility Friday that President Trump would invoke an arcane law that would allow him to deploy the military to remove illegal immigrants, as Trump warned migrants on Twitter that they could be leaving the country soon.
Asked during a television appearance whether Trump is considering using the Insurrection Act, spokesman Hogan Gidley said the president is “going to do everything within his authority to protect the American people” and has “lots of tools at his disposal.”
“We haven’t used them all, and we’re looking at ways to protect the American people,” Gidley said during an appearance on Fox News’s “Fox & Friends.”
His interview took place amid a series of tweets from Trump, including some that suggested new actions to crack down on illegal immigrants.
“All people that are illegally coming into the United States now will be removed from our Country at a later date as we build up our removal forces and as the laws are changed,” Trump said in one tweet. “Please do not make yourselves too comfortable, you will be leaving soon!”
In another, Trump said “bad ‘hombres’” were being detained and would be “sent home.”
His tweets followed a Rose Garden speech on Thursday about a new immigration plan that opened him to criticism from conservatives for not pressing a harder line.
The Insurrection Act of 1807 is a United States federal law that governs the ability of the President of the United States to deploy military troops within the United States to put down lawlessness, insurrection, and rebellion.