Clinton, Sanders reaffirm opposition to Obama immigration raids

Story highlights

  • Reuters reported on Thursday that the Obama administration plans to carry out a series of large scale raids
  • Clinton in January came out fully against deporting families back to unstable Central American countries

New York (CNN)Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders on Thursday reaffirmed their opposition to Department of Homeland Security raids on Central American families in the United States, further breaking with President Barack Obama's administration on the issue.

Reuters reported on Thursday that the Obama administration plans to carry out a series of large scale raids in May and June "to deport hundreds of Central American mothers and children found to have entered the country illegally."
    Clinton said in a statement that she is "against large scale raids that tear families apart and sow fear in communities," a position she first took in January.
    "I am concerned about recent news reports, and believe we should not be taking kids and families from their homes in the middle of the night," she said. "Large scale raids are not productive and do not reflect who we are as a country."
    When Central American children and families began amassing at the U.S. border with Mexico seeking asylum in 2014, Clinton called for them to be deported back to their home countries. She stood by that position last August but said immigrants shouldn't be kept in migrant camps indefinitely, suggesting that "particularly the women and children" should be moved out and opening the door to keeping some of them within the United States.
    Clinton came out fully against deporting families back to unstable Central American countries in January and has asserted that position on the campaign trail ever since.
    Sanders said Thursday that he still opposes "the painful and inhumane business of locking up and deporting families who have fled horrendous violence in Central America and other countries."
    "I urge President Obama to use his executive authority to protect families by extending Temporary Protective Status for those who fled from Central America," Sanders added.