Trump pushing for crackdown on homeless camps in California: report

President TrumpDonald John TrumpMilitary personnel to handle coronavirus patients at facilities in NYC, New Orleans and Dallas Navy hospital ship USNS Comfort has total of 20 patients: report Fauci says that all states should have stay-at-home orders MORE has directed officials to crack down on homelessness in California, The Washington Post reported Tuesday, citing four government officials familiar with the matter.

Officials have reportedly discussed getting homeless people off the streets in areas including Los Angeles and into government-backed facilities. The Post reported that the talks have ramped up in recent weeks. 


Two officials told the Post that ideas such as tearing down existing homeless camps and creating new facilities or refurbishing old ones to give the federal government more control over health care and housing are being considered. 

The administration reportedly has not completed a final plan. 

Officials from the White House, Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Domestic Policy Council were in California this week for discussions, according to the Post. Officials said that Los Angeles' "skid row" area was one focus.


A White House official confirmed to The Hill that there is a team in California for fact finding and learning more about the issue. 

White House spokesman Judd Deere told The Hill in a statement that Trump "has directed his team to ...develop a range of policy options for consideration to deal with this tragedy."

“Like many Americans, the President has taken notice of the homelessness crisis, particularly in cities and states where the liberal policies of overregulation, excessive taxation, and poor public service delivery are combining to dramatically increase poverty and public health risks," Deere said. 

He also noted that Trump in June signed an executive order to "confront the regulatory barriers to affordable housing development." 

The Hill has reached out to HUD for comment.

Alex Comisar, a spokesperson for Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti (D), told The Hill in a statement that the mayor's office learned "very recently" that the administration plans to visit the city "to learn more about our strategies for responding to the homelessness crisis."

"We welcome them and look forward to showing them our work to confront this humanitarian emergency," Comisar said. 

The president in recent months has sparred with some California leaders over issues facing their area.

“Nearly half of all the homeless people living in the streets in America happen to live in the state of California. What they are doing to our beautiful California is a disgrace to our country. It’s a shame," Trump said at a campaign rally last month.

He also wrote in July that House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiNJ governor calls for assessment of coronavirus response after crisis abates Overnight Health Care: Global coronavirus cases top 1M | Cities across country in danger of becoming new hotspots | Trump to recommend certain Americans wear masks | Record 6.6M file jobless claims Hillicon Valley: Zoom draws new scrutiny amid virus fallout | Dems step up push for mail-in voting | Google to lift ban on political ads referencing coronavirus MORE's (D-Calif.) San Francisco-area district was "failing badly."

The president told Fox News earlier this year that he may get involved in the issue in California. 

"We may intercede. We may do something to get that whole thing cleaned up," he said. "It's inappropriate. Now, we have to take the people and we have to do something. We're really not very equipped as a government to be doing that kind of work."

Updated: 3:35 p.m.