A story this morning by the Associated Press has supporters of Donald Trump divided. Is the 11-page DHS memorandum calling for 100,000 National Guard troops to assist in rounding up and deporting undocumented immigrants fake news, or good news?
Dated January 25, and composed as “guidance” to implement Trump’s executive order on immigration, the memo would authorize members of the National Guard in 11 states “to perform the functions of an immigration officer in relation to the investigation, apprehension and detention of aliens in the United States.”
Shortly after the AP broke the story, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters aboard Air Force One that the draft memo “is not a White House document” and said the report was “false.”
To an Associated Press reporter, Spicer said, “I wish you guys had asked before you tweeted.”
The AP reporter noted that the outlet asked multiple times before publication, according to pool reports of the exchange.
Although the memo definitely exists — in fact, it was drafted by retired Gen. John Kelly, Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, which has confirmed the document is “a very early, pre-decisional draft” — some Trump supporters immediately jumped on Spicer’s words to dismiss the entire story as a fabrication.
BREAKING@PressSec himself says national guard story is 100% fake.
Ignore more #MediaLiesAgain.
— Ben Knapp (@BenKnappDC) February 17, 2017
— MakeMenGreatAgain (@LadyInfidels) February 17, 2017
Lol @ people making comparisons of Trump to Hitler over this fake report about him sending national guard to deport illegal immigrants..
— Toby (@TobyTinelli) February 17, 2017
@OutnumberedFNC AP story on National Guard is a perfect example of FAKE news. Boston Globe ran with it. People cannot believe the news.
— Catherine Masie (@ChattieCathie1) February 17, 2017
After much media lies, Trump roars once and the media gets into a tailspin. "National Guard" story is another fake news #MediaLiesAgain
— Elijah Okon (@ElijahDbliss) February 17, 2017
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Yet for others, the AP story is welcome evidence that Trump is answering their anxieties about non-citizens by laying the groundwork for mass deportations.
YAY! About time!!! Trump may deploy National Guard to round up unauthorized immigrants: AP https://t.co/6nEZ05YQHQ
— Daddy (@mba382) February 17, 2017
If the National Guard becomes the vehicle through which RWDSs enter the world, every man of the #AltRight must enlist.
— Richard Powell (@RichPowell_NRx) February 17, 2017
I 100% support Trump using national guard for deportation force. These people should move out on their own. Dems do them great disservice
— DougPaulJc (@DougPaulJc) February 17, 2017
— Hugh Jaynus (@HughJaynus42) February 17, 2017
If I see National Guard on my campus kicking out 'international students' that arent here legally im buying them beer.
— Andrew Quackson (@AndrewQuackson) February 17, 2017
The divide on the right mirrors one on the left. Many Trump opponents are up in arms about the story, while others say it’s a mere diversion from the real issues of the day — or even a clever trick to catch whistleblowers and make the mainstream media look bad.
Trump is considering sending 100,000 National Guard troops to round up undocumented immigrants. Don't tell us not to compare him to Hitler.
— Kaivan Shroff (@KaivanShroff) February 17, 2017
Don't be distracted: President [REDACTED]'s mobilization of the National Guard, like his press con, is pure clickbait. All eyes on #Pruitt.
— Scott Thill (@morphizm) February 17, 2017
Was the National Guard memo leaked to make the media look as bad as Trump says they are? Convenient timing for a blown story. Hmmm.
— JD Rucker (@JDRucker) February 17, 2017
I’m sure I’m not the first to say this, but the denial of the National Guard story makes me wonder whether this was a molehunt for leakers.
— Jamil Smith (@JamilSmith) February 17, 2017
It is obvious to anyone with half a brain that the Trump administration is intentionally leaking fake stories to the press 3/
— Leon Wolf (@LeonHWolf) February 17, 2017
Some people tried to find humor in the Trump regime’s denials.
"People! People! There is no effort mobilize 100,000 National Guard to round up illegal immigrants! We were just thinking about it."
— Gus™ (@Gus_802) February 17, 2017
Prediction for Trump tweet: "The National Guard memo is true, but the news is fake"
— David Martosko (@dmartosko) February 17, 2017
But to others, the AP story is a perfect example of what Steve Bannon, Stephen Miller, and the cadre of white nationalists around Trump really want to do for America.
— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) February 17, 2017
If you don't think Trump would actually deploy the National Guard to round up immigrants, you haven't been paying attention.
— Sulome Anderson (@SulomeAnderson) February 17, 2017