President Trump warned Wednesday that a government shutdown still “could happen” this week, and sought to put the blame on Democrats over their stance on immigration policy.
“The Democrats may… want to shut down the country because they want people flowing into our country,” Trump said during a Cabinet meeting in which he talked up his overall agenda.
Rep. Nancy Pelosi, the House’s top Democrat, replied in a tweet that Trump is the only one talking about a shutdown. “Democrats are hopeful the President will be open to an agreement to address the urgent needs of the American people and keep government open,” she said.
Pelosi and Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer are scheduled to participate in a meeting with Trump at the White House on Thursday.
Lawmakers Debate Immigration Measures as U. S. Government Shutdown Looms
Two days before U.S. government funding expires, lawmakers appeared no closer to resolving a potential sticking point on a spending bill to avert a shutdown: the plight of hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrants who were brought to America as children.
Many Democrats remained firm in linking an extension of federal funds to congressional action allowing nearly 800,000 young immigrants to continue to work and study in the United States after President Donald Trump rescinded a program that had shielded them from deportation.
“Any bill that funds the government must also include a fix for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA),” said Democratic Senator Kamala Harris of California. Trump took aim at Democrats, suggesting their demands on DACA are part of a larger campaign for open U.S. borders.
House Republicans Call for Bipartisan Dreamer Legislation this Month
Today 34 Republican members of Congress sent a letter to House Speaker Paul Ryan supporting the passage of a permanent legislative solution for recipients of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals by the end of the year.
“DACA recipients are contributing members of our communities and our economy,” they write. “For many, this is the only country they have ever known. They are American in every way but status.
Their voices add to the growing momentum from conservatives for a legislative solution for Dreamers this year. Implementing a solution would take at least seven months.
34 House Republicans Press GOP Leader On Immigration
A group of 34 House Republicans on Tuesday asked Speaker Paul Ryan to act this month on legislation dealing with the 800,000 young immigrants brought to the United States as children and living here illegally.
Ryan has said he does not see a need to act before March, the deadline President Donald Trump gave Congress to find a permanent solution after he suspended the temporary protections against deportation granted by the Obama administration. The GOP lawmakers, in a letter to Ryan, pressed for quick action.
“We must pass legislation that protects DACA recipients from deportation and gives them the opportunity to apply for a more secured status in our country as soon as possible,” the lawmakers wrote.
Eight Immigration Advocacy Groups File Complaint Against DHS
Following a series of nation-wide raids this summer that sent nearly 400 undocumented minors to immigration detention facilities, eight immigrants’ rights organizations have collectively filed twin complaints against Immigration and Customs Enforcement with its parent agency, the Department of Homeland Security.
Those organizations, including the National Immigrant Justice Center and Americans for Immigrant Justice, say that the raids, conducted between June and August by ICE officers, unlawfully coerced minors into divulging information about the immigration status and whereabouts of adult family members.
ICE officials then allegedly used that information to track down and lure family members to ICE offices, where they were arrested and detained. The complaints, which claim ICE’s actions violate domestic and international refugee laws, were filed within DHS’s Office of Civil Rights and Office of the Inspector General.
Utah Will Face a ‘Human Crisis’ Without Immigration Reform, Local Leaders Say
Utah’s DACA-eligible population contributes more than $22 million in taxes annually, $13 million of which goes to state and local tax revenue in the state, according to the New American Economy (NAE), a bipartisan coalition of business and government leaders that supports immigration reform.
And in addition to paying taxes, immigrants bolster Utah’s workforce. NAE data show that 91.4% of the state’s DACA-eligible population (who are at least 16 years old) are employed.
“Approximately 1,000 DACA recipients, including the 9,700 who live in the state of Utah, will begin losing their work permits each day,” Wheelwright said. Utah businesses and industries are already reporting a limited workforce, according to Derek Miller, the president and CEO of World Trade Center Utah.
U.S. Attorney General Calls for Efficient Review of Immigration Cases
U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Wednesday called on the nation’s immigration courts to decide cases more efficiently, amid a burgeoning backlog that is hampering the Trump administration’s efforts to deport more illegal immigrants.
Sessions’ memo to the Executive Office for Immigration Review, the agency under the Department of Justice that conducts immigration court proceedings, called on judges and staff to do what they can “consistent with the law” to “increase productivity, enhance efficiencies, and ensure the timely and proper administration of justice.”
President Donald Trump’s administration has so far brought on 50 new immigration judges, Sessions said, in an effort to pare back a backlog of more than 600,000 cases. Sessions said in his memo that the Justice Department plans to hire 60 more judges in the next six months to cut the pending case load in half by 2020.
Obama Blocked Deportation of 550,000 Illegals, More than Atlanta’s Population
U.S. immigration officials have revealed that they face a deportation backlog of 550,000 illegal immigrants who were given temporary amnesty by former President Obama or simply let off the hook by liberal judges.
The massive backlog is being tackled by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, but the sheer numbers are overwhelming the agency’s enforcement and removal department.
Arkansas Residents Attend Washington Immigration Rally
More than a dozen Arkansas residents headed to a rally in Washington, D.C., in support of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
The group of residents left Little Rock on Tuesday. Officials with the organizing groups United We Dream and the Fair Immigration Reform Movement say they expect up to 17,000 people to attend Wednesday’s rally, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported .
Rep. Judy Chu among those arrested in D.C. during Dream Act rally
Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA) was among those arrested Wednesday during a rally in Washington D.C. to urge Congress to vote on legislation that would protect the ability of young immigrants to work and study in the U.S. without fear of deportation.
Chu’s office confirmed the congresswoman’s arrest to NBC News late Wednesday afternoon, saying it happened at 2:30 p.m. ET. Chu was released an hour later, her office said.