Washington, DC – As Republicans hold Ukraine aid hostage in a bid against asylum and humane immigration processes, a powerful Philadelphia Inquirer editorial, “Biden must make immigration a priority, not give in to GOP demands,” is a must-read, noting in part:
“Senate negotiators who are working on a bipartisan compromise must ensure that the U.S. asylum system remains a beacon of hope for those seeking refuge and protect a key presidential authority known as humanitarian parole. While a steady stream of irresponsible ‘invasion’ rhetoric and images of immigrant caravans have stoked needless fear…Something must be done to reduce the large number of migrants who continue to brave harrowing conditions — risking assault, injury, and death — as they travel in search of a better life in the United States…”
According to Vanessa Cárdenas, Executive Director of America’s Voice:
“At a moment when Republicans are showing who they are, and again we are reminded about the real world dangers of dehumanizing and demonizing immigrants, Democrats should not make permanent concessions to hardline Republicans. Let’s be clear, a Republican Party headed by Trump will not take immigration off the table no matter what Biden offers them. Republicans would rather divide and disinform than legislate and lead, and view immigration as a political issue to exploit rather than a policy issue to solve.”
Below, find additional excerpts of the Philadelphia Inquirer editorial, “Biden must make immigration a priority, not give in to GOP demands”:
“Republicans have forced the Biden administration to the negotiating table on immigration, holding aid for Ukraine hostage in a bid to enact draconian measures that would further upend the asylum process and pave the way for the kind of anti-immigrant crackdown favored by right-wing hard-liners.
Senate negotiators who are working on a bipartisan compromise must ensure that the U.S. asylum system remains a beacon of hope for those seeking refuge and protect a key presidential authority known as humanitarian parole.
While a steady stream of irresponsible “invasion” rhetoric and images of immigrant caravans have stoked needless fear, all Americans — regardless of political persuasion — should worry about the situation at the border, which is arguably out of control …
Something must be done to reduce the large number of migrants who continue to brave harrowing conditions — risking assault, injury, and death — as they travel in search of a better life in the United States. However, little of what is being touted by Republicans would improve the situation. If anything, their proposals are likely to lead to more chaos.
…Expelling migrants or denying them the legal process of asylum may send them back to the harm they were fleeing, and violates the spirit of national and international laws. Also, by not addressing the root causes of our immigration problems, it virtually guarantees that desperate migrants will continue to attempt to illegally cross the border.
The Republican wish list also includes limiting the president’s immigration parole power, which the Biden administration has used to grant temporary legal status to hundreds of thousands of immigrants — including Afghan and Ukrainian refugees.
…Biden has failed to effectively communicate his administration’s efforts to address the issue, relying on half measures that have resulted in mixed results and have allowed people like Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and New York Mayor Eric Adams to dominate the conversation.
There are no quick and easy answers, but some of the more pragmatic and effective proposals — including expanding legal pathways that can help fill millions of available U.S. jobs, supporting refugee processing and resettlement across Latin America, and partnering with nonprofits and local governments to reduce the pressure of new arrivals on resources and infrastructure — are not even part of the current discussion.
Instead, Senate negotiators have to contend with pressure from House Republicans who seem to have no intention of providing a reasonable and humane solution to immigration.
…Proposals like HR 2 will not fix the immigration crisis at the border, but they offer a chilling preview of what the U.S. can expect if Donald Trump returns to the White House and the worst of Republican policies are unleashed.
The Biden administration must act decisively and convince the public and voters that it is serious about addressing the current problems with immigration. The alternative would be disastrous.”