President Trump announces new policy for asylum seekers

Trump speaks on immigration, border security at White House.
6:24 | 11/01/18

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Transcript for President Trump announces new policy for asylum seekers
President trump they're just five days a for the mid term elections saying that he plans to use his presidential powers to address what has been the focus of his political speak. Over the last few weeks. He is focused on immigration and and that caravan as he called that he has said repeatedly that he thinks that caravan issue is a good issue for Republicans. And a Republican base in the lead up to the mid term elections. I was struck by a number of headlines and there. He said he plans to end the abuse of the asylum system in the US. It's remember that the United States is already set a record low cap on the number of refugees and asylum seekers and allows. Into the country. He also said it you'll no longer let the US government release. Those who have come across the border Seeking Asylum and then wasting and tell there have their silence hearing. He referred repeatedly to a system that he calls catch and release. I want to bring in my colleague Louis Martinez over at the Pentagon who was also pointing out. Some factual inaccuracies. In some of the the president had to say about immigration. In that catch and release system and also what he said about the building of tents on the border Lee what did you make of that speech. Mary Alice I mean what I heard as a major disconnect between what the president is saying and what we've heard me senior military officials talk about what what the purpose of the US military mission. Is to be on the border we now know that there are 7000 US military personnel are going to be headed they're in the coming weeks their variety in Texas and in Arizona as we speak. But there are constantly being told that they are there to support role. They're not there to carry out law enforcement they're not there to be catching. Migrants as they cross the border there to provide logistics are there to provide construction. Well what about that construction you heard the president say organ they're going to be building massive numbers of tents where they're gonna hallows. These individuals that he says because they're not going to be released anymore they're going to be housed in tents. That is completely different from what we've heard from the senior US military commander of US Northern Command. General Terry's shot as he was shot as he told us testing a few days ago when we asked about that. He told us known these tents and that that we are building our specifically for CBP personnel S Customs and Border Protection officers these are the individuals who. Do you carry out law enforcement duties along the border. Then the idea being that. If they're going to be pushing extra personnel to the border they need to be house somewhere that's close to it so that's why they're gonna build temporary housing. That is completely different from what we're hear from the president say that they and it's an and it would affect I think he has a concert that these are B. Detention facilities but that's not what the military tells us again he had you heard him talk about how I. I would there's been some violence associated with the second caravan that is true as it crossed the border from Guatemala into Mexico there were some violent clashes there's so. That's. The language that he uses to explain why. We need a tighter border secretive security presence with the US military figure and talk there about what if they throw rocks well maybe the US military. Could fire back yes they do have the right of self defense and yes some of these personnel will be armed. But their main duty is nine two. Carry out law enforcement along that border that is the task of CBP. So I'm in mean as I'm hearing is some kind of struck. Vital language and it's only kids it's just such a total disconnect from what we've heard here now of course he is the president. He can create policy on the spot so potentially we're gonna have to go out and ask. I'm military representatives shortly what what the president meant whether there is now going to be a new policy. And with respect to these tents and went to purpose is all along about building them and one more thing I'm you know. During a previous caravan earlier this year. There those numbers and they started with high but then were whittled down about 8500 or so. DHS at the time urged everybody in those Karen as if they wanted illegally enter the United States. And seek asylum they had to be so at a port of entry what is support of entry. That is like scent is cedar as site. And no malice in Arizona those are crossing lanes where it is there are established ports of entry from one country into another. What DHS secretary in Nielsen said the time line is if you try to cross the border. As part of his caravan in an area that is not the port of entry you're not going to be processed for asylum you're gonna be turned away and he hadn't processed by law enforcement. But if you wanted to port of entry which action the majority of those. 500 did what they had a deal is they had to wait their turn and they did wait their turn. And a very large number of them actually did gain processing for asylum so. And you know what I hear from the president today just very different from the reality that we've heard here at depending on in from what we've previously heard from the jets. And I am a there'll be a lot of questions about the detention of Stanley's if he's imagining that some of these migrants would be detained in house a news these tense. The military be building but we know there's laws on the books that that set limits to how long children and minors can be detained. As to how do you think this would play out is he is he asking for some sort of last minute change the standing loft oh what's your questions are you gonna have to bring to military officials. Well we are gonna have to ask Anderson precisely everything he just laid out because let's not forget that the military was cast at one point earlier. During year earlier family detention crisis that they would they were being overwhelmed the facilities that they contract an hour capacity. And sell ads as some of them more vulnerable now with families but kingdom and children. Too many unaccompanied children in what some certain facilities adults and others. I'm and so they did he need to reach out for additional capacity and they went to the military they got that support the military had. Identified several bases I love where it could be built up. Attack housed additional migrants but they were never actually tasked with that because the number of migrant crossings went down. The president there also ended on politics is going to be a lot of talk about the fact that he called. Stacey Abrams who's running to be the first see you now African American governor in the country's history. Not qualify for that position he's headed to Georgia to campaign for her opponent tomorrow. Or over the weekend I'm Mary Alice parks and joined by Louis Martinez from the Pentagon you've been watching ABC as we. Wrap the president's talks there on immigration. Thanks so much.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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