Trump invented an immigration crisis to further his most consistent goal

On almost any issue you can think of, Trump is all over the map. But there is one position on which he has never wavered: antipathy toward nonwhite immigration. From his campaign charge that Mexican immigrants are “rapists,” to his fruitless quest to get funding for a border wall, to his gratuitously cruel policy of family separations, to his declaration of a national emergency, Trump has left not an iota of doubt about how he feels.

To be sure, sometimes the president uses anti-immigration rhetoric to inflame his base. But unlike with other issues, Trump seems actually to believe his demagoguery about would-be Latino migrants.

The administration acts as if it considers the asylum seekers to be less than human. What other conclusion can be drawn, after thousands of young children were taken from their parents and shipped to detention centers far away, as a deterrent to others who might seek entry? How else can anyone characterize the notion — now under active consideration, according to the White House — of transporting migrants hundreds or thousands of miles, not out of necessity but simply so they can be released in “sanctuary cities” and the districts of Trump’s political opponents?