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GOP, Dem senators back bill to postpone ending Title 42

GOP Dem senators back bill to postpone ending Title 42


​A bipartisan group of senators will introduce a bill Thursday meant to force the Biden administration to delay ditching the Title 42 health policy next month, warning that suspending the order will unleash a humanitarian crisis as thousands of illegal immigrants flock to the southern border, according to a report.

The proposal, backed by five Democrats and six Republicans, will seek to postpone the scheduled May 23 rescission of Title 42 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention until the administration comes up with a plan to counter the expected influx.

“It just doesn’t seem at all workable that this, that whatever plan they’re working on right now, can be ready to implement in a way that is both safe for our border communities and respects the humanitarian crisis that is coming,” Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), who drafted the bill with Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.), told Axios.

Migrants expelled from the US and sent back to Mexico under Title 42, April 1, 2022.
REUTERS/Jose Luis Gonzalez
Senator James Lankford, a Republican from Oklahoma, speaks during the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Orlando, Florida, U.S., on Sunday, Feb. 27, 2022.
Sen. James Lankford is the top Republican on the Senate Border Management Subcommittee.
Tristan Wheelock/Bloomberg via Getty Images
An asylum seeker from Mexico (R) waits outside the San Ysidro Port of Entry, which he hopes to cross to plead for asylum in the U.S., on March 22, 2022 in Tijuana, Mexico
An asylum seeker from Mexico waits outside the San Ysidro Port of Entry, which he hopes to cross to plead for asylum in the US, on March 22, 2022, in Tijuana, Mexico.
Mario Tama/Getty Images

“I do think it has a chance of passing, but it’s going to depend on which half of the Biden team wins out,” added Lankford, the top Republican on the Senate Border Management Subcommittee, ​which Sinema chairs.

​”Is it the open-borders part of the Biden administration? … Or is it the portion of the Biden administration that says, ‘This gives us a good excuse to say those crazy folks in Congress compelled us to do this’ … and this becomes an excuse for them to not cause this kind of chaos in the border​,​”​ he added.​

The CDC instituted Title 42 in March 2020, at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in the US. The public health order has allowed border officials to expel nearly 2 million migrants attempting to enter the US without hearing asylum claims. 

Senator Joe Manchin
Sen. Joe Manchin has called the CDC’s decision to rescind the policy “frightening.”
REUTERS/Elizabeth Frantz
Senator Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) walks through the Senate Subway on her way to a security briefing for senators on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., March 30, 2022.
Sen. Kyrsten Sinema drafted the bill with Sen. James Lankford.
REUTERS/Elizabeth Frantz
Sen. Mark Kelly, D-Ariz., speaks during a hearing of the Senate Armed Services Committee to on Capitol Hill, in Washington on March 24, 2022.
Sen. Mark Kelly is one of the Democratic co-sponsors of the bill.
AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana, File

Democratic co-sponsors of the bill include Sens. Mark Kelly of Arizona and Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire, both of whom face tough re-election fights this November. Fellow Democratic Sens. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Jon Tester of Montana have also signed on. 

Republicans on board with the bill include Sens. John Thune of South Dakota, John Cornyn of Texas, Thom Tillis of North Carolina, Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia and Rob Portman of Ohio. 

Manchin, who represents a state that former President Donald Trump won by nearly 40 percentage points in 2020, has called the CDC’s decision to rescind the policy “frightening.”

asylum-seekers from Central America, pass their time at a migrant camp at the border where they have lived for months with other migrants that were mostly sent back to Mexico and now they hope to be allowed into the U.S. when Title 42 is lifted, in Reynosa, Mexico, April 1, 2022.
Asylum seekers from Central America pass their time at a migrant camp and now hope to be allowed into the US when Title 42 is lifted, in Reynosa, Mexico, April 1, 2022.
REUTERS/Veronica G. Cardenas
A Cuban woman and her daughter wait in line to be escorted to a Border Patrol van for processing in Yuma, Ariz., Feb. 6, 2022, hoping to remain in the United States to seek asylum
A Cuban woman and her daughter wait in line to be escorted to a Border Patrol van for processing in Yuma, Ariz., Feb. 6, 2022, hoping to remain in the United States to seek asylum.
AP Photo/Elliot Spagat, File

“Title 42 has been an essential tool in combating the spread of COVID-19 and controlling the influx of migrants at our southern border. We are already facing an unprecedented increase in migrants this year, and that will only get worse if the Administration ends the Title 42 policy,” ​Manchin said last week. “We are nowhere near prepared to deal with that influx.”

H​assan, reacting after the CDC’s April 1 announcement that Title 42 would be scrapped, warned of the consequences of canceling the policy.​

“Ending Title 42 prematurely will likely lead to a migrant surge that the administration does not appear to be ready for. I’ll keep pushing the administration to strengthen border security & look forward to hearing directly from border agents during my upcoming trip to the border,” she said on Twitter.

The White House told Axios that lawmakers should approve the administration’s request for $10 billion in new coronavirus-related funding.

“On the president’s first day in office, he sent an immigration bill to Congress that invests in smart solutions, effectively manages the border and addresses the root causes of migration. Those that are concerned about [the US] immigration system that [are] holding up COVID funding should pass it​,” the White House said in a statement. ​​

The vast majority of people staying at the shelter are women and their children from Mexico and Central America who have been expelled under Title 42 authority or were still waiting to try for asylum
The vast majority of people staying at Good Samaritan shelter are women and their children from Mexico and Central America who have been expelled under Title 42 authority or were still waiting to try for asylum.
AP Photo/Christian Chavez, File
 Senator JOHN CORNYN(R-TX) alongside GOP members speaks about US-MX border during a press conference, today on March 30, 2022 at SVC/Capitol Hill in Washington DC, USA.
Sen. John Cornyn speaks about the US-Mexico border during a press conference, March 30, 2022.
© Lenin Nolly/ZUMA Press Wire

Senate Republicans voted against the spending bill on Wednesday, demanding that it include an amendment keeping Title 42 in place. 

At Wednesday’s White House briefing, press secretary Jen Psaki said Title 42 is not an immigration policy, “it’s a public health measure,” and insisted the administration has a plan in place. 

“But as we’re implementing this over the course of the next five weeks, if I’m doing my math correctly, we’ve also surged resources from the Department of Homeland Security. And we will continue to take additional steps to implement and make clear that this is not the time to come, that there are — there will still be significant measures put in place for anyone who tries to irregularly migrate to the United States​,” she said.

A woman embraces a child at the Good Samaritan shelter in Juarez, Mexico, Wednesday, March 30, 2022
A woman embraces a child at the Good Samaritan shelter in Juarez, Mexico, Wednesday, March 30, 2022.
AP Photo/Christian Chavez
President Joe Biden answers a reporter's question after signing the Postal Service Reform Act into law during an event in the State Dining Room at the White House on April 06, 2022 in Washington, DC. A
The bill is meant to force the Biden administration to delay ditching the Title 42 health policy next month.
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Federal officials estimate that as many as 170,000 migrants will head to the border once the Title 42 policy ends. 

The number of illegal immigrants encountered at the southern border shot up 6.6% in February from January, Customs and Border Protection said.  ​​​






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