Dem rep: Tour of migrant detention facilities ‘heart-wrenching’

Rep. Barbara LeeBarbara Jean LeeMarijuana industry donations to lawmakers surge in 2019: analysis Lawmakers urge DNC to name Asian American debate moderator Overnight Health Care: Planned Parenthood to leave federal family planning program absent court action | Democrats demand Trump withdraw rule on transgender health | Cummings, Sanders investigate three drug companies for 'obstructing' probe MORE (D-Calif.) on Sunday compared holding facilities for migrant families to prisons.

On CNN’s “State of the Union,” Lee recounted her tour of a facility in McAllen, Texas, and a detention center in Brownsville, Texas.

“It was heart-wrenching. The images that we seen on the media really speak volumes to what’s taking place but when you see it in person it’s horrific,” she said.

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Lee said she and other lawmakers were asked not to take photos inside the facility, but said she took notes of her observations. Lee said she saw a boy and a girl, each about 3 years old, crying in cells by themselves.

She also said she saw about 10 mothers with their children in another cell. 

Lee lamented that there did not appear to be cots or pads for the detainees to sleep on, because the director of one of the facilities said they did not have the resources.

“It’s just tragic. I mean these people are being criminalized,” she said.

Bowing to sharp, bipartisan pressure, President TrumpDonald John TrumpJimmy Carter: 'I hope there's an age limit' on presidency White House fires DHS general counsel: report Trump to cap California trip with visit to the border MORE last Wednesday signed an executive order halting the practice of migrant family separations that occurred under his administration's "zero tolerance" policy. The order came after days of Trump and administration officials saying that only Congress could address the issue.

Trump said during a Cabinet meeting the next day that he and other administration officials were "bothered" by images of the families in holding facilities. However, he argued they were well taken care of.

“We have a situation where some of these places, they’re really running them well, and I give a lot of credit to [Department of Homeland Security] Secretary [Kirstjen] Nielsen and all the people that have worked this,” he said. “But it’s still something that shouldn’t be taking place."