Immigration News 2/16/19
Politico, 2/15/19 – Congress averted another government shutdown this week by passing a funding bill that included $1.375 billion for the wall Trump wants to build at the Mexican border. Trump’s demand was for $5.7 billion in wall funding. After reluctantly signing the bill, Trump declared a “national emergency” that would allow him to move funds already appropriated for other purposes to pay for his wall. Democrats in Congress and state governments said they would challenge the legality of this move.
Washington Post, 2/14/19 – Inside the border wall negotiations: Washington Post reporters talked to insiders in the White House and on the Hill to provide a sense of what went on behind the scenes. Their conclusion: “For Trump, the negotiations were never really about figuring out how to win. They were about figuring out how to lose — and how to cast his ultimate defeat as victory instead.”
New York Times, 2/13/19 – During the border-wall negotiations Democrats in the House at one point sought to limit the funding for beds in ICE detention facilities as a way of restricting Trump’s ability to detain undocumented immigrants. That negotiating point was dropped from the final, compromise agreement, but it remains a key issue in the debate over immigration. This article explains how and why detention beds became a central part of the negotiations.
NPR, 2/15/19 – The Trump administration has proposed that a citizenship question be added to the 2020 U.S. Census form. States, cities, and other groups have argued that this question would depress the number of responses and create an inaccurate count. They’ve sued in various federal courts to prevent adding the question. The Supreme Court this week agreed to the administration’s request to expedite the process and hear the case. That hearing is likely to occur in April.
El Paso Times/USA Today, 2/15/19 – ICE has stopped force feeding 12 asylum-seeking immigrants from India and Cuba who have been on a hunger strike while detained at the El Paso Processing Center. During forced feeding, detainees are strapped down in a sitting position on a bed and fed through a lubricated tube inserted in the nose. The United Nations human rights office said this practice could violate the U.N. Convention Against Torture.