Eight illegal alien families who attempted to invade the United States last year have filed claims against the Trump administration for millions in damages, the AP reported on Monday. The alien families were separated at the border for processing under U.S. law. Now they claim they were mistreated by law enforcement.
Another part of the claim states that the plaintiffs are due damages because the administration was trying to deter illegal immigration with its separation policy. “The trauma inflicted by the family separation policy was entirely intentional and premediated,” the claim says. “This point cannot be overstated: The most senior members of the U.S. government intentionally chose to cause parents and small children extraordinary pain and suffering in order to accomplish their policy objectives.” The plaintiffs are being represented by the American Immigration Council, the National Immigrant Justice Center, and the law firms Arnold, Porter & Kairys, and Rudovsky, Messing, Feinberg, & Lin, all of which are providing service pro bono.
It says a lot about the American legal system that a lawsuit like this is taken seriously. None of the plaintiffs have standing in U.S. courts, as not only are they not American citizens, they are criminal aliens who attempted to enter the country illegally. This should be thrown out immediately. Instead, illegal aliens are actually afforded more rights than American citizens. No American has ever successfully sued for being separated from their children after being detained. Meanwhile, in the case Ms. L v. ICE, judge Dana Sabraw barred family separations at the border.
The claim has two bases. The first is that the illegal invaders deserve damages because of the treatment they received when trying to enter the country illegally. No healthy legal system would allow this. It is akin to allowing a defeated military to sue over physical and emotional distress caused to them during a war. If you were not ready for the consequences, then you should not have tried to invade. The second is that the administration was being cruel by enforcing the law. The aliens would have been better off if law enforcement simply let them in, therefore enforcing the law is an unnecessary infliction of harm.
The families are seeking $3 million each. The claim is the first step in suing the federal government under the Federal Tort Claims Act. Because the claim is so ridiculous, I would like to say it has no chance. However, the fact that illegal aliens are given standing in U.S. courts in the first place means that the ridiculous is already the norm.