White House asks for $2 billion to speed deportations at the border
The Obama administration is asking Congress for $2 billion to address the crisis at the border. The administration wants the emergency appropriation "for rapidly expanding border enforcement actions and humanitarian assistance programs to cope with the influx."
They also are asking Congress for the authority to speed the deportation of parents who arrive with their children from Central America.\
The president will also ask Congress to revise existing statutes to give the Homeland Security secretary, Jeh Johnson, new authorities to accelerate the screening and deportation of young unaccompanied migrants who are not from Mexico. Fast-track procedures are already in place to deport young migrants from Mexico because it shares a border with the United States.
Mr. Obama will also ask for tougher penalties for smugglers who bring children and other vulnerable migrants across the border illegally, the officials said.
“This is an urgent humanitarian situation,” Cecilia Muñoz, the director of the White House Domestic Policy Council, said in a telephone interview on Saturday. “We are being as aggressive as we can be, on both sides of the border,” she said. “We are dealing with smuggling networks that are exploiting people, and with the humanitarian treatment of migrants while also applying the law as appropriate.”
After the president declared a humanitarian crisis in early June, federal emergency management officials have been coordinating with the many federal agencies involved in finding detention shelters for the unaccompanied youths and in stepping up enforcement measures to deter more migrants from coming.
“The uptick in activity at the border and the steps the administration has put in place are extraordinary,” a White House official said. “We are maxing out our capacities within the existing appropriated monies.”
Federal officials have opened shelters to detain unaccompanied children at three military bases and are seeking facilities for other shelters. Border authorities are required to turn over unaccompanied minors within 72 hours to the Department of Health and Human Services, which oversees the shelters and seeks to locate family members in this country who can receive the youths.
The expanded authority to expedite deportations will only be applied to those children who don't have relatives in the US already. And even the "expedited" process will take months and probably a couple of years given the appeals process open to illegals.
Editor Lifson thinks some of the money will go to fly illegal children to their parents around the country. I wouldn't put it past this administration to make an end run around Congress like that but it appears most of the money will go to handle the humanitarian needs of those already in custody.
As for cutting off the influx at the border - forget it. It would be one thing if the illegal children were trying to flee into the interior. Instead, they jump the border and promptly turn themselves in.The crisis has taxed state, federal, and local resources to the max and the $2 billion requested by the administration is only a start.