More than a dozen Republican senators are asking the Trump administration to halt the separation of immigrant families at the U.S.-Mexico border while Congress works out legislation.

GOP senators, led by Sen. Orrin HatchOrrin Grant HatchTrump to award racing legend Roger Penske with Presidential Medal of Freedom Trump awards Presidential Medal of Freedom to economist, former Reagan adviser Arthur Laffer Second ex-Senate staffer charged in aiding doxxing of GOP senators MORE (Utah), sent a letter to Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsTrump's no racist; he's an equal opportunity offender Press: Acosta, latest to walk the plank The Hill's Morning Report — Trump retreats on census citizenship question MORE asking for a moratorium of the president's controversial "zero tolerance" policy, which is resulting in the separation of families detained at the border.

"We support the administration’s efforts to enforce our immigration laws, but we cannot support implementation of a policy that results in the categorical forced separation of minor children from their parents," the Republican senators wrote.

"We therefore ask you to halt implementation of the Department’s zero tolerance policy while Congress works out a solution that enables faster processing of individuals who enter our country illegally without requiring the forced, inhumane separation of children from their parents," the senators continued.

ADVERTISEMENT

In addition to Hatch, GOP Sens. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainThe peculiar priorities of Adam Schiff Ocasio-Cortez fires back at Lindsey Graham: 'Graham wants to bring back 1950s McCarthyism' Meghan McCain knocks Lindsey Graham for defending Trump's tweets: 'This is not the person I used to know' MORE (Ariz.), Pat RobertsCharles (Pat) Patrick RobertsCNN's Cuomo spars with Kris Kobach over whether Trump's tweet was racist Kansas Republican suggests Kobach candidacy threatens Senate GOP majority The Hill's Morning Report - 2020 jitters hit both parties in the Senate MORE (Kan.), Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsTrump angry more Republicans haven't defended his tweets: report Republicans scramble to contain Trump fallout The Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump digs in ahead of House vote to condemn tweet MORE (Maine), Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiOvernight Defense: Highlights from Defense pick's confirmation hearing | Esper spars with Warren over ethics | Sidesteps questions on Mattis vs. Trump | Trump says he won't sell F-35s to Turkey Epstein charges show Congress must act to protect children from abuse PBS premieres first nationally distributed kids' show with Native American lead MORE (Alaska), Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerTrump announces, endorses ambassador to Japan's Tennessee Senate bid Meet the key Senate player in GOP fight over Saudi Arabia Trump says he's 'very happy' some GOP senators have 'gone on to greener pastures' MORE (Tenn.), Lamar AlexanderAndrew (Lamar) Lamar AlexanderThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by JUUL Labs - Trump attack on progressive Dems draws sharp rebuke Republicans make U-turn on health care Trump announces, endorses ambassador to Japan's Tennessee Senate bid MORE (Tenn.), John BoozmanJohn Nichols BoozmanVA chief pressed on efforts to prevent veteran suicides McConnell ups pressure on White House to get a budget deal There is a severe physician shortage and it will only worsen MORE (Ark.), Dean HellerDean Arthur HellerThis week: Barr back in hot seat over Mueller report Trump suggests Heller lost reelection bid because he was 'hostile' during 2016 presidential campaign Trump picks ex-oil lobbyist David Bernhardt for Interior secretary MORE (Nev.), Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerTrump angry more Republicans haven't defended his tweets: report The Hill's Morning Report - A raucous debate on race ends with Trump admonishment Republicans scramble to contain Trump fallout MORE (Colo.), James LankfordJames Paul LankfordOvernight Defense: House approves 3 billion defense bill | Liberal sweeteners draw progressive votes | Bill includes measure blocking Trump from military action on Iran Senators urge Trump to sanction Turkey for accepting Russian missile shipment Acosta on shaky ground as GOP support wavers MORE (Okla.), Bill CassidyWilliam (Bill) Morgan CassidyLiberal think tank: GOP paid parental leave proposals are too narrow Senate GOP raises concerns about White House stopgap plan to avoid shutdown Laura Ingraham says her family won't wear Nike again after 'Betsy Ross flag' sneaker canceled MORE (La.) and Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanFighting the opioid epidemic: Congress can't just pass laws, but must also push to enforce them The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by JUUL Labs - House to vote to condemn Trump tweet Rising number of GOP lawmakers criticize Trump remarks about minority Dems MORE (Ohio) signed on to the letter to Sessions.

Trump's immigrant policies have fueled days of media coverage and sparked high-profile backlash from Republicans on and off Capitol Hill.

The senators added in their letter Tuesday that they've "read with increasing alarm" media reports of immigrant children being separated from their parents.

"Although enforcing our immigration laws is an essential responsibility of the federal government, it must be done in a way that is consistent with our values and ordinary human decency," the GOP senators added.

Sessions announced the "zero tolerance" policy in April as part of a move to prosecute adults who illegally cross the border to the fullest extent of the law. As a result, children are separated from their parents and detained as the adults are prosecuted.

Trump and administration officials have tried to shift the blame to Democrats, arguing that their hands are essentially tied.

But GOP senators rejected that in their letter, saying while the current "crisis has multiple contributing causes ... the immediate cause of the crisis is your Department’s recent institution of a 'zero tolerance' policy."

Senators are scrambling to come up with legislation that would deal narrowly with families detained at the border instead of a broader immigration bill like the proposals being debated by the House.

But there is no sign yet of a bill that can get 60 votes in the Senate. Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzGoogle official denies allegations of ties to China The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by JUUL Labs - House to vote to condemn Trump tweet Cruz in 2016 said 'something fundamentally wrong' with Christians who back Trump: book MORE (R-Texas) is expected to introduce his own bill and a working group of GOP senators, led by Sen. John CornynJohn CornynTrump angry more Republicans haven't defended his tweets: report White House, Congress inch toward debt, budget deal White House abruptly cancels Trump meeting with GOP leaders MORE (Texas), are aiming to introduce legislation this week.

Meanwhile, Democrats have coalesced behind legislation from Sen. Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinHillicon Valley: Senators unload on Facebook cryptocurrency plan | Trump vows to 'take a look' at Google's ties to China | Google denies working with China's military | Tech execs on defensive at antitrust hearing | Bill would bar business with Huawei Epstein charges show Congress must act to protect children from abuse Feinstein introduces bill to prohibit campaigns from using social media bots MORE (D-Calif.) that Republicans believe is too broad and would result in immigrants who tried to enter the country illegally being released.

"Right now there is a full-on Democrat bill, that they've already put out. We'll have some Republican response to it. And then we've got to be able to work together to get an actual final bill that could actually pass," Lankford separately told reporters after a closed-door policy lunch.