Sen. Dianne Feinstein accused President Donald Trump of “stoking fear to motivate (his) political base” by sending an estimated 5,000 U.S. military members to the Mexico border.
Trump’s stated goal in sending active duty military to the border is to deter a caravan of roughly 4,000 asylum seekers fleeing violence-stricken Central American countries.
The caravan is 1,000 miles from the U.S., and it could be weeks or even months before they reach the border, according to the Associated Press.
“From everything we have learned, the group of immigrants traveling from Central America is almost entirely comprised of families, including young children, and they are fleeing some of the most violent and poorest countries in the world. They are not dangerous terrorists,” Feinstein said in her statement.
Trump’s move to send troops to the border, and his call for the end of constitutionally protected birthright citizenship, come as he attempts to fire up his conservative base ahead of the 2018 midterm elections.