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As the number of migrant children detained by the U.S. government grows to almost 2,000 minors, Trump administration officials defended the policy of separating children from their parents and authorities announced plans to house several hundred juveniles in a temporary tent shelter near El Paso, Texas.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions cited the Bible to explain why the Trump administration has launched a policy of separating families seeking illegal entry into the United States.

"I would cite you to the Apostle Paul and his clear and wise command in Romans 13, to obey the laws of the government because God has ordained them for the purpose of order," Sessions said during a speech to law enforcement officers in Fort Wayne, Ind.

New figures released by Department of Homeland Security show that more than 50,000 people were arrested attempting to illegally cross the southern border last month. The new numbers come as the Trump administration is trying to enforce a crackdown on illegal immigration at the border.

In a statement, DHS Press Secretary Tyler Q. Houlton said,

The president of the University of Southern California, C.L. Max Nikias, is stepping down, according to an announcement by the university's board of trustees. The resignation comes as USC is embroiled in a series of scandals that have tarnished the public image of the prestigious private institution in Los Angeles.

Immigrant children in the custody of U.S. border authorities allegedly suffered pervasive abuse ranging from insults and threats to physical assaults, according to documents reviewed by the American Civil Liberties Union.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions has ordered the nation's immigration judges to end their practice of temporarily removing cases from their dockets without issuing decisions.

Immigrant advocates say the move is part of a broader strategy to influence the immigration courts, which fall under the purview of the Department of Justice, in order to hasten the removal of some immigrants.

President Trump's chief of staff, Gen. John Kelly, said he has never seriously considered leaving his job and indicated that he's in lockstep with the president on many issues. Kelly says they have "a close relationship" and spend up to eight hours a day together.

"My view is to speak truth to power. I always give my opinion on everything. He always listens," he said. "Sometimes he takes the opinion, sometimes he doesn't."

Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen defended the administration's "zero tolerance" policy that calls for separating families who cross the border illegally, saying the undocumented immigrants shouldn't get special treatment.

"That's no different than what we do every day in every part of the United States — when an adult of a family commits a crime," she told NPR. "If you as a parent break into a house, you will be incarcerated by police and thereby separated from your family."

Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced Monday that the Departments of Justice and Homeland Security will partner to prosecute anyone illegally crossing the southwest border and separate children from parents.

Yale University announced Wednesday that its board of trustees voted to rescind the honorary degree awarded to comedian Bill Cosby in 2003.

Teachers in Arizona held a strike vote on Thursday that launched Arizona's first-ever statewide walkout and turned down a proposed pay raise — instead demanding increased school funding.

The Arizona Education Association and the grass-roots group the Arizona Educators United announced that teachers will walk off the job April 26.

A federal judge in California has ruled that Facebook can be sued in a class-action lawsuit brought by users in Illinois who say the social network improperly used facial recognition technology on their uploaded photographs.

Updated at 3:40 a.m. ET on Wednesday

A woman with an apparent grudge against YouTube for what she claimed was censoring and de-monetizing her videos, opened fire at the video-sharing service's San Bruno, Calif., headquarters, wounding several people before fatally shooting herself, according to police.

The Orange County Board of Supervisors voted 3-0 to buck California's political leaders and join a federal lawsuit against that state's sanctuary law.

That law, known as SB 54, limits the cooperation of local law enforcement agencies with federal immigration authorities. It was designed to help protect undocumented residents from deportation and signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown in October 2017.

Investigators with Britain's information commissioner searched the London headquarters of Cambridge Analytica on Friday amid reports that the firm harvested the personal data of millions of Facebook users as part of a campaign to influence the U.S. 2016 presidential elections.

Updated at 10:20 p.m. ET

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg appeared open to limited government regulation of some activities of his company, as he fielded questions about reports that Cambridge Analytica exploited Facebook users personal data to influence the U.S. elections.

"I'm not sure we shouldn't be regulated," he said on CNN during a rare interview. "I actually think the question is more, what is the right regulation, rather than yes or no, should it be regulated?"

President Trump visits California Tuesday where he will appear at the U.S.-Mexico border to promote the prototypes of the border wall he has promised to build in his fight against illegal immigration.

There will be protests by opponents who oppose construction of the wall, as well as local supporters who say a border wall is exactly what's needed to keep the country safe.

The prototypes are being displayed near where there is already about 14 miles of border fencing topped with razor wire.

Updated at 11:30 p.m ET

The city of San Francisco is joining the cause of removing old statues that are out of step with contemporary political and cultural tastes.

The sculpture "Early Days" sits near San Francisco's City Hall. It depicts a vaquero and a missionary standing over a sitting Native American.

United States Citizenship and Immigration Services is changing its mission statement to eliminate a passage that describes the U.S. as "a nation of immigrants."

The agency's new mission statement as it appears on the agency's website reads:

Updated at 10 p.m. ET

The Broward, Fla., sheriff said 17 people are dead in the Wednesday shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in the city of Parkland, northwest of Fort Lauderdale. He said a suspect is in custody.

In news conferences after the incident, Sheriff Scott Israel said 12 of the people who died were found inside the school building and two were found just outside. Another victim was on the street, and two people died at the hospital.

Updated at 8:20 p.m. ET

A founding member of the Electronic Frontier Foundation and former lyricist for the Grateful Dead, John Perry Barlow, has died at the age of 70, according to a statement issued by the Foundation.

The CEO of the Humane Society of America, Wayne Pacelle, will keep his job leading one of the nation's largest animal charities despite an internal investigation that identified sexual harassment complaints by three female subordinates and threats by major donors to cut their support.

Pledging to defend American businesses and workers, President Trump imposed tariffs on imported solar panel components and large residential washing machines on Monday.

Updated at 7:10 pm. ET

Former White House political strategist Steve Bannon has stepped down from Breitbart News Network, a conservative website for which he had served as executive chairman.

The departure had been widely rumored and anticipated since Bannon was quoted in author Michael Wolff 's new book, Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House, which was critical of President Trump.

In deciding not to appeal court rulings, the Trump administration has paved the way for transgender people to enlist in the U.S. military starting Monday.

The Department of Justice withdrew its legal challenge to several federal court rulings that blocked President Trump from banning transgender people from enlisting in the U.S. armed services.

High-ranking U.S.-based Volkswagen executive Oliver Schmidt has been sentenced to seven years in prison and ordered to pay a $400,000 fine for his part in a decade-long diesel-emissions cheating scandal.

Updated at 8:10 p.m. ET

The U.S. Supreme Court will allow the Trump administration to fully enforce its revised ban on allowing entry to the United States by residents of eight countries while legal challenges are heard by a federal appeals court.

Six of the countries — Syria, Libya, Iran, Yemen, Chad and Somalia — are majority-Muslim nations. The other two are North Korea and Venezuela.

Updated at 6:40 p.m. ET

A federal court has denied a request for a temporary restraining order sought by an Obama-era appointee seeking to block the Trump administration from assuming control of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

The ruling by U.S. District Court Judge Timothy Kelly is a victory for President Trump, who appointed White House Budget Director Mick Mulvaney to take charge of the CFPB after the resignation of its previous director, Richard Cordray.

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The head of Puerto Rico's power authority stepped down Friday amid controversy over his handling of a system that still can't deliver electricity to that island two months after Hurricane Maria destroyed the power grid.

Ricardo Ramos, executive director of the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority, or PREPA, resigned as he was unable to shake off questions about a $300 million contract that he had awarded to Whitefish, a small Montana-based energy firm, that was supposed to restore power on the island.

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