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HHS and DHS Reports: Trump White House Wants to Slash Refugee Numbers and Further Militarize the Border Despite Findings of the Administration’s Own Experts

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Washington, DC – As the Trump Administration calls for slashing the numbers of refugees admitted to America and making huge new investments in border security, new reports on the subjects from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) undercut the rationale for the Administration’s hardline push.

Instead, the government’s own reports make the case that refugees benefit, not burden America, and that the border is already secure and does not need a massive new militarization effort.

Disturbingly, the news coverage of the HHS report highlights that the Trump Administration tried to suppress the findings, in recognition that they didn’t fit the story that the Administration is trying to rely on to justify their hardline policy push.

According to Frank Sharry of AVEF, “The Trump Administration seems determined to defy the facts in order to pursue its radical agenda of remaking America’s racial and ethnic composition. But facts are stubborn things and the American people don’t want to be lied into turning back refugees and building walls.”

Below are the key findings and implications of the newly reported HHS report showing refugees’ positive impact on America and the DHS report finding that the border is already secure:

New York Times, “Trump Administration Rejects Study Showing Positive Impact of Refugees”:

“Trump administration officials, under pressure from the White House to provide a rationale for reducing the number of refugees allowed into the United States next year, rejected a study by the Department of Health and Human Services that found that refugees brought in $63 billion more in government revenues over the past decade than they cost.

The draft report, which was obtained by The New York Times, contradicts a central argument made by advocates of deep cuts in refugee totals as President Trump faces anOct. 1 deadline to decide on an allowable number. The issue has sparked intense debate within his administration as opponents of the program, led by Mr. Trump’s chief policy adviser, Stephen Miller, assert that continuing to welcome refugees is too costly and raises concerns about terrorism.

Advocates of the program inside and outside the administration say refugees are a major benefit to the United States, paying more in taxes than they consume in public benefits, and filling jobs in service industries that others will not. But research documenting their fiscal upside — prepared for a report mandated by Mr. Trump in a March presidential memorandum implementing his travel ban — never made its way to the White House. Some of those proponents believe the report was suppressed.”

Washington Post story, “Border Security is Tougher Than Ever, DHS Report Finds,” undercuts the notion of an out of control border that needs additional resources. The myth of the insecure border has been a staple for President Trump since his days as a candidate and border security has been touted by some lawmakers as a necessary part of a package involving legislative solution for Dreamers. As the DHS report shows, the real facts about the border tell a very different story:

“Sneaking across the U.S. border from Mexico is tougher than ever before, and U.S. agents are catching or stopping the majority of those who attempt to do so, according to a new report by the Department of Homeland Security.

The report, published last week by the agency’s Office of Immigration Statistics, estimates that 55 to 85 percent of attempted illegal border crossings are unsuccessful, up from 35 to 70 percent a decade ago. In one telling sign of the difficulty, the number of illegal migrants and deportees who make repeated attempts to get in has also fallen dramatically, because so many would-be migrants are giving up.

The report’s findings challenge depictions of the U.S. border as a place where American law enforcement is overwhelmed and ineffective. President Trump has ordered DHS to make preparations for the construction of a wall between the United States and Mexico, and last week he met with Democratic Party leaders to negotiate additional border security improvements.

The new DHS report indicates the agency has already made significant progress in its ability to stop people from sneaking in or consider trying. Arrests along the Mexico border fell to historic lows during the Obama presidency, then dropped further after Trump took office vowing a crackdown.”

Follow Frank Sharry and America’s Voice Education Fund on Twitter: @FrankSharry and @AmericasVoice

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