(President Trump has not yet repealed President Obama's DACA order, protecting certain people brought here as children, and he claims to be conflicted about it, but there are indications that some revision, at least, is coming.) Spicer, like other members of the Trump Administration, also elided the question of whether the crime in question might simply be one's presence in America, in violation of immigration laws.
"Perhaps most critically, the President is empowering DHS to carry out the immigration laws now on the books", said Spicer.
"Everybody who is here illegally is subject to removal at any time", he added. On Friday, he plans to reprise his themes when he addresses Republicans at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference near Washington, D.C.
The latest enforcement memos also include calls for Homeland Security to start planning for the costs and construction of the controversial border wall.
Arrests at the US-Mexico border rose sharply at the end of a year ago, according to the Pew Research Center.
Since the moment he announced his candidacy for president in June 2015, now-President Donald Trump has made immigration policy a cornerstone of his campaign, and now, his administration. The aim was to swiftly block travelers and refugees while creating a stringent new vetting process to screen non-citizens from seven countries, and especially Muslims, who might pose US security hazards. The senator has introduced a bill in response to Trump's recent executive orders, which if passed would guarantee legal counsel to those who are detained while entering the country. This is a mandate for, if not mass deportation, then mass uncertainty and fear. Media reports say Trump chided his Mexican counterpart for failing to control drug trafficking and suggesting the United States might even deploy troops to defeat narcotics cartels on Mexican territory.
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Still, the combination of renewed agreements with local police and sheriffs, an expanded federal immigration police force, and priorities that give leeway to the judgment of immigration officers, sets the stage for an unprecedented crackdown on undocumented residents and likely a huge spike in deportations.
The memos take a clear departure from the priority system that President Barack Obama had in place and that left many immigrants in the country feeling far more secure than they have been since Trump's election.
"Secretary Tillerson and Secretary Kelly are going to have a great discussion down there and to walk through the implementation of the executive order", Spicer said.
Clubbed with the month-old Donald Trump administration's controversial executive order on travel ban on seven Muslim countries last month, these memos seek to expand and allow virtually everyone who is in the USA without legal documentation eligible for deportation and in some cases, in an expedited fashion. More federal personnel will be hired to execute the plans.
Under the draft guidelines, Mr Kelly seeks to "expeditiously hire" 10,000 more enforcement agents and 5,000 border patrol officers.
The Trump administration says the surge has overwhelmed federal resources and created "a significant national security vulnerability".
In fact, more data about undocumented immigrants who have been "apprehended by ICE" and are in the middle of the legal process will be released to the public in a free "weekly report". "We're talking close to a million people who have already been adjudicated, and had their status processed through a formal due-process system". It's still unclear what the sweeping measures mean for state-based immigration efforts in Texas. The White House said Tuesday the estimate could be as high as 15 million, although Spicer did not cite a source for the larger count. The poll found that 80 percent of Americans believe that USA cities that arrest illegal immigrants for crimes should be required to turn them over to federal authorities, rather than shelter undocumented migrants from authorities, or opt to release them rather than detain them under instructions from Washington.