U.S. Senator Ted Cruz of Texas has announced that he is introducing emergency legislation to end federal policy of family separation for immigrants who enter the country illegally.
Sen. Cruz stated Monday that he was introducing the "Protect Kids and Parents Act," which would among other things, double the number of federal immigration judges, create new temporary shelters to keep families together, and mandate that undocumented families be kept together.
"All Americans are rightly horrified by the images we are seeing on the news, children in tears pulled away from their mothers and fathers. This must stop. Now," stated Cruz.
"For far too long, children have been the greatest victims of our broken immigration system, with tens of thousands of children who were detained under the Obama Administration and continuing through today, and with far too many of those children facing horrific physical or sexual assault from criminal human traffickers."
Cruz contrasted his proposed legislation with what he described as the Democrats' "catch and release" policy for illegal immigrants.
"Rather, we should fix the backlog in immigration cases, remove the legal barriers to swift processing, and resolve asylum cases on an expedited basis," continued Cruz.
"We can fix this. If my Democratic colleagues will join me, not play politics but work to solve the problem, we can start to end family separation this week. And, we can honor the rule of law."
Recently, the Trump administration's policy of separating children from their undocumented parents at the border has garnered national outrage.
In April, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the federal government was going to crack down on families entering the nation illegally.
"Having children does not give you immunity from arrest and prosecution," stated Sessions in a speech last week.
Notable conservative intellectual David French commended Cruz's proposed legislation, saying in a National Review column published Monday that it was a "solid start" that "enjoys the considerable virtue of focus."
"Yes, it punts on immigration reform, the wall, and other legislative fixes, but Cruz is wise to do so. Each additional substantive provision increases controversy and complexity. Let's save the grand bargains for another day," wrote French.
Cruz's bill might not have the broad support among his base, however. According to a Quinnipiac poll released Monday, while 66 percent of Americans oppose the separation policy, 55 percent of registered Republicans support it.