(TargetLiberty.org) – Representative Veronica Escobar, a Texas Democrat and co-chair of Biden’s re-election campaign, has voiced her concerns about the delayed efforts by the president and fellow Democrats on immigration reform. In an interview with Politico, Escobar criticized the recent support for a Senate border bill that allocates billions for additional personnel for Customs and Border Protection, asylum officers, and Immigration and Customs Enforcement workers, suggesting that earlier action on progressive immigration reform could have been more beneficial.
Describing immigration as the most challenging domestic policy issue currently faced, Escobar lamented decades of congressional inaction that have exacerbated the situation. She highlighted the global mass displacement of people and the political use of immigration as key factors contributing to the public’s frustration over the lack of progress on this front. Escobar emphasized the weariness within communities like El Paso, known for their generosity towards migrants, over the escalating immigration challenges.
Escobar acknowledged President Biden’s various attempts to address immigration and the widespread criticism he has received. She pointed out that the responsibility for immigration policy reform lies with Congress, expressing regret that the Democratic Party, including the president, did not prioritize this issue sooner.
The recently unveiled $118 billion supplemental spending package, which includes funding for Ukraine and Israel alongside measures to address the southern border crisis, has received support from Senate leaders and the Biden administration. The package aims to control illegal immigration, which saw a record 2.4 million encounters in fiscal year 2023, through a bipartisan agreement that provides about $20 billion for border control efforts.
Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas has described the Senate’s bipartisan agreement as a significant step towards addressing the longstanding challenges resulting from congressional inaction. However, the deal faces opposition from both Republicans, who argue it is insufficient to address the border crisis, and some liberal Democrats, who believe it could harm migrants seeking asylum. The package encompasses funding for border security and staffing, changes to asylum rules, work permits for migrants, increased legal immigration pathways, and a “Border Emergency Authority.”
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