'Some of the cruelty is intentional': MSNBC guest rails against 'Stephen Miller faction' of Trump's White House on lost children
MSNBC panel (Photo: Screen capture)

During a discussion about the missing migrant children the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement seems to have lost, one panelist accused President Donald Trump's federal government of being intentionally cruel to immigrants and their families.


New York Times editorial board member Mara Gay told "MSNBC Live" that losing 1,500 migrant children might not have been intentional, but the heartlessness would be a perk for this White House.

"I actually think that pressure is mounting," she said. "If you have been following Twitter or on social media in 48 hours. I continue to believe that if this can be viewed as a humanitarian issue, if the public shows they care, especially in a midterm year, the people who represent them will show up."

Immigration attorney Paul Reyes noted that in President Barack Obama's final year he instituted the Central American Minors Program because it was a problem in his administration as well. The program would have allowed those seeking asylum to apply online prior to making the long trip to the United States border. The hope was that people would not try to enter the United States if they knew they would be denied.

The program was successful in that people waited to see what the decision was from the U.S. instead of simply making the journey and entering without the approval.

"One of the first things he did after entering office, President Trump and Jeff Sessions canceled this program," Reyes explained. "So the problem is not the outrage, it's the political will to move forward."

"Let's be clear, though," Gay said. "Immigration has been an issue, a difficult one, a thorny one for the administration, but some of the stuff we're seeing, the cruelty, is intentional.

"Yeah," panelists agreed.

"And we should not, you know, this is a 'Stephen Miller faction.' That's what's happening," Gay closed.

Watch the commentary below: