Many Democrats in Congress have said that they are opposed to the reported plans the Biden administration has to reinstate some policies put in place under the Trump administration in regard to the southern border.
It’s been reported that President Joe Biden is open to reinstating some of former President Donald Trump’s immigration policies that made it easier for the U.S. to deport illegal migrants. The president is open to such a return to those policies in exchange for having Republicans support sending more military aid to Ukraine so it can continue to fight back Russia successfully.
According to reports, the plans include allowing migrants to be expelled from the country without receiving a screening for the possibility of asylum. Detentions and deportations would also be increased under the reported plans.
Many Democrats in Congress, though, view these policies as problematic.
On Tuesday, Representative Pramila Jayapal of Washington, who chairs the Congressional Progressive Caucus, said:
“These are the same policies weaponized against immigrant communities under the Trump administration and are the foundation of President Trump’s vision of ‘sweeping raids, giant camps and mass deportations’ for a second term.
“Destroying the asylum system will not fix the southern border. We did not spend years fighting this agenda under Trump only to give in to Senate Republicans’ extreme demands now.”
In the statement, Jayapal also called on her colleagues in the Senate to “reject these policies and support funding that would give the administration the tools it needs to process asylum seekers, enforce U.S. immigration laws and provide funding to cities welcoming migrants.”
She said she would like to fix “our broken immigration system,” but that could only be done by working with all members of Congress on a new path forward – not reverting to Trump-era policies. She said it needed to be done “in a thoughtful way, not as a ransom demand for Ukraine aid.”
One of Biden’s recent priorities has been to send additional military aid to Ukraine as it continues to fight back its Russian aggressors. But, Republicans have been weary of doing so, unless the White House includes additional border security measures into a larger package.
CBS News reported this week that the White House has signaled that it would be in support of a similar immigration policy that Trump enacted during the COVID-19 pandemic. Called Title 42, it allowed the U.S. to expel illegal immigrants quickly due to public health concerns.
The Biden administration allowed Title 42 to expire on May 11, though. In the time since, there has been a huge surge of migrants to the southern border, as they know that they won’t face immediate expulsion out of the U.S. if they are caught crossing illegally.
Even still, many congressional Democrats are against returning to that policy. In fact, Democratic Representative Delia Ramirez from Illinois wrote on the social media platform X this week that the plan was “deplorable.” She wrote:
“The fact we are considering exchanging the lives of asylum seekers for Ukrainian lives is draconian & immoral. We CAN choose policies that recognize our interconnectedness. Let’s prove it by showing courage & rejecting this cruel exchange.”