SANTA ANA, Calif. – The Trump administration isn't the first to grapple with the question of how to handle tens of thousands of immigrant families arriving on the U.S.-Mexico border.
Four years ago, Barack Obama faced a similar crisis when record numbers of Central American immigrants fleeing violence began showing up at the border. Obama administration officials had to deal with the same court case the current administration began fighting Thursday, a day after President Donald Trump issued a new executive order to stop separating migrant families.
More than 60,000 family "units" — which the U.S. government defines as a parent and child — were stopped along the border in the 2014 fiscal year. That was a fourfold increase from a year earlier.
In the last fiscal year, that number exceeded 70,000.