As First Lady Melania Trump went to tour a camp of immigrant children wearing a jacket that said "I REALLY DON'T CARE," Hillary Clinton raised a stunning amount of money for migrant kids simply by asking for donations on Twitter. A series of tweets from the former Secretary of State pulled in $1.5 million in donations for organizations aiming to help migrant children, Marie Claire reported Thursday.
"We should be heartbroken to see families torn apart, but we should not be hopeless," Clinton tweeted on Monday, along with a link to an ActBlue donation page. "There’s something you can do right now to help. Make a donation that will be split across eight organizations working to protect kids separated from their families." The donations will be split between 10 different civil rights organizations, including the American Civil Liberties Union, the Florence Immigrant and Refugee Rights Project, Kids in Need of Defense, the Women's Refugee Commission, and others.
It's no surprise that Clinton has been an outspoken opponent of President Donald Trump's family separation policy, which has resulted in undocumented children and babies being taken away from their parents and put into cages across the country. During her 2016 presidential campaign, she proposed a path to citizenship for the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants in America, and pledged to expand the Obama-era initiatives that offered temporary legal status to some of those immigrants.
The donations come on the heels of a speech Clinton gave on Monday at the Elly Awards, an event hosted by the Women's Forum of New York. In her remarks, she criticized Trump's family separation policy, saying that "every human being with a sense of compassion and decency should be outraged."
“What’s happening to families at the border is horrific,” Clinton said. “Nursing infants being ripped away from their mothers, parents being told their toddlers are being taken to bathe or play, only to realize hours later they aren’t coming back. Children incarcerated in warehouses and, according to one account, kept in cages. This is a moral and humanitarian crisis."
Although Republican voters largely support the policy of separating undocumented children from their parents, the immense backlash from the left and center eventually compelled Trump to back down. On Wednesday, he signed an executive order that will ostensibly end family separation — although some experts told Bustle that the language in the order is vague enough to give the administration some wiggle room regarding the policy.
However, immigration officials have already separated over 2,000 children from their parents, and the administration said Wednesday that it has no plan for reuniting those children with their families. John Sandweg, who served as acting director of Immigrations and Customs Enforcement from 2013-2014, told NBC News that some of those undocumented children may never see their parents again.
"Permanent separation. It happens," Sandweg told NBC News. "You could be creating thousands of immigrant orphans in the U.S. that one day could become eligible for citizenship when they are adopted."
It's also unclear how the Trump administration will treat undocumented families going forward. The president claimed that the administration's "zero tolerance" policy, under which undocumented parents are prosecuted even when they cross the border with children, will continue despite the executive order ending of family separation. The Washington Post reported Thursday, however, that Border Patrol will stop recommending such undocumented parents for prosecution. The Department of Justice, on the other hand, says that it will continue these prosecutions, while internal emails obtained by CNN suggest that the administration won't be pursuing further prosecutions.
After Marie Claire reported that Clinton had pulled in $1.5 million in donations for immigrant children, Clinton thanked her supporters on Twitter — and asked them to keep on donating.