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Trump administration takes step to limit migrants’ asylum claims

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The Trump administration took a major step on Thursday to restrict asylum claims by migrants, putting forward a regulation that would make individuals ineligible for asylum if they cross the U.S. southern border illegally.

Once the plan goes into full effect, which is expected to happen in coming days, migrants entering at the U.S. southern border would only be eligible for asylum if they come to official ports of entry.

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“What we are attempting to do is trying to funnel … asylum claims through the ports of entry where we are better resourced, have better capabilities and better manpower and staffing to actually handle those claims in an expeditious and efficient manner,” a senior administration official told reporters in a news briefing on Thursday, on condition of anonymity.

The plan is the Trump administration’s latest move to limit the eligibility of migrants for asylum in the United States.

The regulation would largely affect migrants from Central America’s Northern Triangle – Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador – who cross the U.S. border with Mexico to flee violence and poverty in their home countries.

“The vast majority of aliens who enter illegally today come from the Northern Triangle countries, and large portions of those aliens assert a credible fear,” the regulation’s text says. “Channeling those aliens to ports of entry would encourage these aliens to first avail themselves of offers of asylum from Mexico.”

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Immigrant advocates quickly denounced the administration’s move.

“U.S. law specifically allows individuals to apply for asylum whether or not they are at a port of entry,” said Omar Jadwat, director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s Immigrants’ Rights Project. “It is illegal to circumvent that by agency or presidential decree.”

Reporting by Yeganeh Torbati; Editing by Dan Grebler and Peter Cooney

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Internet recoils at Trump’s latest ‘insane’ news conference: ‘Maybe this guy shouldn’t be president’

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President Donald Trump ranted at length about the Kurds, military deployments overseas, Sen. Lindsey Graham and former President Barack Obama in a bizarre conversation with reporters in the White House.

The president met with the media Wednesday afternoon during a bilateral meeting with Italian president Sergio Mattarella, and he touched on a bewildering variety of topics -- much to the confusion of onlookers.

This is fucking insane.

This press conference is purpose-built to empower and delight every bad actor in the world.

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Biden finally unloads on Trump for smearing his son: ‘Release your tax returns or shut up’

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Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden on Wednesday blasted President Donald Trump for an ongoing attack on his son Hunter.

At a press conference in Ohio, Biden was asked if he had done enough to stop his son from taking a retainer from a company in Ukraine.

But the former vice president insisted that "corruption" in Trump's government should be the immediate focus.

"He is running the most corrupt government in the history of the United States of America," Biden charged. "He is running the most corrupt government in the history of the United States of America."

Biden then turned to the camera as if he were speaking directly to Trump.

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Trump rants about Christopher Columbus during press conference with Italy’s president

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President Donald Trump on Wednesday insisted that he would never stop celebrating Christopher Columbus.

"The United States and Italy are bound together by a shared cultural and political heritage dating back thousands of years to ancient Rome," Trump said during a joint press conference with Italian President Sergio Mattarella.

"Over the centuries, the Italian people have blessed our civilization with magnificent works of art, science, philosophy, architecture, and music. On Monday, we paid tribute to the Italian explorer who led a voyage of discovery to the new world. A gentleman known as Christopher Columbus. To me, it will always be called Columbus Day. Some people don’t like that. I do."

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