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Sen. Markey Blasts 'Zero Tolerance' Immigration Policy

BOSTON (CBS) - Senator Ed Markey is lashing out at the Trump Administration over its new "zero tolerance policy" for asylum seekers crossing the U.S./Mexico border.

"I call it barbaric," said Markey after it was defended by Attorney General Jeff Sessions this week as "biblical."

Markey says just in the last two weeks more than 600 children have been separated from their detained parents who are now being taken into federal custody. He's proposing the Keep Families Together Act so children can be separated only if they're being trafficked or abused by their parents, and only after consultation with child welfare experts.

Sen. Ed Markey
Sen. Ed Markey (WBZ-TV)

"This is an issue of humanity, it is simple, families should be together," said Markey.

He calls "immoral" the images of children being kept in large detention centers and says his legislation can be acted on now without waiting for comprehensive immigration reform.

"Because we can't make progress on every front should not mean we can't make progress on any front, and here we have children,: he said.

Markey says he needs bipartisan support as 40 democratic senators have signed on.

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