House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Thursday publicly warned illegal immigrants not to open the door if an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agent is knocking.
“An ICE deportation warrant is not the same as a search warrant. If that is the only document ICE brings to a home raid, agents do not have the legal right to enter a home. If ICE agents don’t have a warrant signed by a judge, a person may refuse to open the door and let them in,” Pelosi, reading from a card, said at her weekly press conference.
The Speaker’s comments come as the Trump administration is once again preparing to launch sweeping raids across the U.S.
ICE will target roughly 2,000 illegal immigrants who have ignored court orders to leave the country. The raids, which will be conducted across ten major U.S. cities, will begin on Sunday and be the first of an ongoing effort by the administration to apprehend and deport illegal immigrants.
Trump and Pelosi were at odds just a few weeks ago over planned immigration raids.
The president announced plans in June to deport a massive number of illegal immigrants, but he later postponed the operation, telling the public he wanted to negotiate with Democrats on a solution to the current border crisis. The House Speaker had personally reached out to him at the time, asking him not to follow through on the plan.
Pelosi said Thursday that, instead of confronting the president directly, she will appeal to religious groups in an effort to get Trump to call off the raids.
“I’m going to appeal to people of faith, faith-based organizations, to appeal to the president. I think that they put him in office and they have a better voice for that,” she said, calling the immigration raids “heartless.” The California Congresswoman added that she was interested in working with the Trump administration on immigration reform.
It’s not clear where Democrats and Republicans could find common ground on immigration reform, but Pelosi said she was open to allowing asylum seekers to make claims in their home countries instead of the U.S. — a proposal that the White House has also been pushing.
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