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Snopes Says Obama Built Migrant Child Cages, Not Trump


Snopes Says Obama Built Migrant Child Cages, Not Trump

If you ask a conservative about the Internet’s first fact-checking website, Snopes, they’ll tell you that the resource has a long history of liberal-leaning “fact checks.” But one of Snopes most recent fact checks will likely incur no scrutiny from conservatives. Snopes says that Obama, not Trump, built migrant child cages. They’ve categorized the long-held conservative talking point as TRUE.

“The Obama administration, not the Trump administration, built the cages that hold many immigrant children at the U.S.-Mexico border.” Snopes reports in an unquestionable fashion.

The concern began with President Trump himself, who while notoriously tough on immigration, declared that it was Obama who initially set the standard for child migrant detention environments.

Trump stated, “Obama built the cages. I didn’t build them. Obama built them.”

Here’s an excerpt from Snopes.

“That portion of Trump’s commentary is true. Images of children behind chain-link fencing were widely seen at a site in McAllen, Texas, that had been converted from a warehouse to an immigrant-detention facility in 2014. Social media users who defended Trump’s immigration policies also shared a 2014 image of Obama’s Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson touring a facility in Nogales, Arizona, in 2014, in which the fencing could be seen surrounding migrants there, too. That image was taken during a spike in the number of unaccompanied children fleeing violence in Central American countries.

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Johnson addressed the issue during a June 2019 interview with the non-partisan think tank The Aspen Institute.

Very clearly, chain link, barriers, partitions, fences, cages, whatever you want to call them, were not invented on January 20, 2017, OK. And what’s interesting is Tom Homan made that statement — and under normal circumstances to fact check that, I would have called Tom Homan, who was the director of ICE ERO [Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Enforcement and Removal Operations] while I was secretary, and say, ‘Hey Tom, did you guys use these things for ICE facilities?”

According to Johnson, the chain-link fences were to serve the goal of gender separation. However, it seems the notoriety the use of the cages was delayed until after Trump was elected to the Presidency.

The Snopes report is problematic for both liberals and conservatives. Liberals have long shared Snopes articles as a way to combat what they feel are conservative lies. Conservatives have long held that Snopes is, in essence, the very definition of fake news. Both sides will grapple with the latest Snopes report that targets one 2020’s most central, passionate issues.

Immigration will remain a polarizing issue through the 2020 Presidential campaign. But the issue has been alive and well for decades, even during Bill Clinton’s reign as President. In 2016, CNN’s Jake Tapper pointed out the potential media biased coverage between former presidents and Trump.

Author: Jim Satney

PrepForThat’s Editor and lead writer for political, survival, and weather categories.