Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., advised then-President Barack Obama in the summertime of 2014 that he might use “very broad energy” to restrict immigration as he noticed match, in keeping with a letter obtained by Fox Information.

Within the July 29 letter, Feinstein cites Part 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act — the identical federal laws cited by the Trump administration Thursday in unveiling a rule denying asylum claims to migrants who enter the nation illegally.

“Each time the president finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the US could be detrimental to the pursuits of the US,” the laws states, “he might by proclamation, and for such interval as he shall deem needed, droop the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he might deem to be acceptable.”

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Feinstein’s letter initially notes that the senator has mentioned doable laws with then-Homeland Safety Secretary Jeh Johnson. Feinstein then writes: “there may be additionally an argument that there’s ample flexibility in present regulation for the federal government to reply to the present disaster and that additional laws is just not wanted.” She provides that the authority vested within the presidency by Part 212 (f) signifies that “no laws is important to provide your administration the instruments it wants to reply to this disaster, and that any wanted momentary measures could be applied by presidential motion.”

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In response to Feinstein, then-acting Immigration and Customs Enforcement Director Thomas Winkowski wrote that “[w]hile there isn’t any categorical prohibition on utilizing the broad, basic authority conferred by part 212(f) to assist reply to the inflow of unaccompanied kids, any such use would require cautious examine …”

Representatives for Feinstein didn’t instantly return emailed requests for remark. Since Trump’s election, Feinstein has been a outstanding critic of his immigration coverage.

“There’s an unprecedented disaster at our Southern border the place aliens perceive that they’ll enter the nation illegally, keep away from elimination, and finally stay within the U.S. dwelling and dealing illegally,” U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Companies spokesman Michael Bars stated in an announcement. “The congressionally delegated authority for our president to deal with crises at our border appropriately is acknowledged traditionally as a bipartisan method to fixing a few of the most endemic challenges to nationwide safety and public security. By strengthening the integrity of our lawful immigration system, each the pursuits of the American folks and bonafide asylum seekers correctly presenting themselves at ports of entry prevail.”

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