Trump: 'I Will Never Sign a Bill That Forces the Mass Release of Violent Criminals'

By Susan Jones | February 12, 2019 | 5:58am EST
President Donald Trump speaks at a rally at the El Paso County Coliseum on February 11, 2019 in El Paso, Texas. Trump continues his campaign for a wall to be built along the border as the Democrats in Congress are asking for other border security measures. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

( - President Donald Trump told a rally in El Paso, Texas Monday night that as he was walking onto the stage, he was told that "progress is being made" on border security negotiations.

On Sunday, word spread that Democrats were insisting on a reduction in detention space for criminal aliens -- something Trump nixed outright at his rally:

"I will never sign a bill that forces the mass release of violent criminals into our country," the president told the cheering crowd.

"The Democrat Party has never been more outside of the mainstream," Trump said. "They're becoming the party of socialism, late-term abortion, open borders, and crime."

Trump continued:

This weekend, some Democrats even proposed a measure that would force the release of thousands of criminal illegal aliens, including dangerous felons convicted of rape, sex trafficking, violent assault and even murder into our country. Can you believe this?

Their proposal would put a hard cap on the number of illegal aliens that our brave ICE officers -- we love our ICE officers! -- can detain and thus remove, forcing thousands of criminals to be set free into United States communities.

I don't think so. OK, I don't think so!

And I want to thank our ICE officers, what they put up with is incredible. And that includes Border Patrol and that includes law enforcement -- law enforcement, we love them.

Trump then recited some ICE statistics, saying that in the last two years alone, ICE officers have arrested 266,000 criminal aliens, charging or convicting 100,000 of them with assault; 40,000 with larcenies; 30,000 with sex crimes; 25,000 with burglary; 12,000 with vehicle theft; 11,000 with robbery; 4,000 with kidnapping; and 4,000 with murder.

(Chants of "Build that wall!" erupted.)

"If we cut detention space, we are cutting loose dangerous criminals into our country," Trump said. "Slashing ICE detention is the first step of many for the far-left -- I call them the radical left. We will never abolish ICE -- they want to abolish ICE.

"So let me say very clearly to those pushing this ridiculous and radical agenda: I will never sign a bill that forces the mass release of violent criminals into our country. And I will never abolish or in any way mistreat our great heroes from ICE and border patrol and law enforcement."

Later, in an interview with Fox News's Laura Ingraham, Trump said a wall is for the safety of Americans and America: "And a wall is a very good thing, not a bad thing. It's a moral thing," he said.

"We don't even say build the wall anymore. We say finish the wall, because we've built a lot and we're renovating a tremendous amount of stuff that was really in bad shape but it had good structure. So we are saying, finish the wall. Walls are very important. If you don't have it, all the technology, Laura, all the drones that they have flying around so nicely up in the air, they don't mean a thing."

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