Schumer breaks down in tears while denouncing Trump’s travel ban

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer broke down in tears on Sunday as he announced that Democrats are considering legislation to overturn President Trump’s controversial executive order temporarily banning immigration from seven predominantly Muslim countries.

“This executive order was mean-spirited and un-American,” Schumer said at a press conference in New York City, where he was surrounded by families affected by the ban. “It was implemented in a way that created chaos and confusion across the country, and it will only serve to embolden and inspire those around the globe who will do us harm.”

On Friday, Trump signed an executive order barring people from seven countries — Syria, Sudan, Yemen, Iran, Iraq, Libya and Somalia — from entering the United States for 90 days. It also stopped all refugees from entering the U.S. for 120 days and indefinitely suspended the entry of refugees from Syria.

But lawmakers, including several Republicans, criticized Trump for issuing the travel ban without warning.

Slideshow: Protests at U.S. airports over travel ban >>>

“It is clear from the confusion at our airports across the nation that President Trump’s executive order was not properly vetted,” Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., said in a joint statement. “We are particularly concerned by reports that this order went into effect with little to no consultation with the departments of State, Defense, Justice and Homeland Security.”

On NBC’s “Meet the Press,” White House chief of staff Reince Priebus said the administration’s lack of advance notice was by design.

“I don’t think you want a grace period,” Priebus said. “Because then people who want to do bad things to Americans would just move up their travel date two days in order to get into the country before the grace period is over.”

In an appearance on ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said he’s concerned the travel ban may have gone too far.

“I think it’s a good idea to tighten the vetting process,” McConnell said. “But I also think it’s important to remember that some of our best sources in the war against radical Islamic terrorism are Muslims, both in this country and overseas.

“I think we need to be careful,” McConnell added. “We don’t have religious tests in this country.”

McConnell stopped short of declaring his opposition to the order. But it’s clear Senate Democrats are ready to push back.

“We’re demanding the president reverse these executive orders that go against what we are, everything we have always stood for,” Schumer said. “We’re here today to deliver a vociferous ‘no’ to the president and the misguided executive orders that are shocking to a majority of Americans and are inflicting wounds on this country.”

On Saturday night, a federal court in Brooklyn issued an emergency stay temporarily blocking part of the order amid a wave of protests at airports around the country.

Slideshow: Anti-Trump protesters rally for Muslim and immigrant rights >>>

The court’s decision, which affects people who have been detained in airports, came after the ACLU and other activist groups filed a class action lawsuit on behalf of two Iraqis who were held at New York City’s John F. Kennedy International Airport.

More than 100 people, including some with current visas, were detained or turned around at airports as a result of the temporary ban.

Earlier Sunday, a defiant Trump took to Twitter to address the backlash

“Our country needs strong borders and extreme vetting, NOW,” Trump tweeted. “Look what is happening all over Europe and, indeed, the world — a horrible mess!”

“Christians in the Middle-East have been executed in large numbers,” the president continued. “We cannot allow this horror to continue!”

“These orders go against what America has always been about,” Schumer added. “The orders make us less humanitarian, less safe, less American.”

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