Debate on Border Policies Continues in Congress!

border policies

New border policy measures to strengthen border security have long been on the White House agenda. The Biden Administration is trying to push through Congress a package that includes additional financial aid to Ukraine. A total of $61.4 billion of this $106 billion aid package is earmarked for Ukraine.

The package includes $13.6 billion for border security. If this additional aid is passed by Congress, 1300 additional border patrol officers and 1600 new asylum officers will be hired. President Biden, together with his team, is conducting a kind of bargaining process with the negotiators representing the Republican wing in order to pass this aid package through Congress.

On Capitol Hill last week , Biden signaled that he would reevaluate border security policies in line with Republican demands to get Ukraine funding talks back on track: "We have no time to waste. Congress needs to provide additional funding to Ukraine before the holidays, simple as that. Frankly, I find it surprising that we've gotten to this point, where Republicans in Congress are preparing to give Putin the biggest gift he can imagine. (...) This is a very serious issue, and I'm willing to make significant concessions on border security. We need to fix our broken border system. (...) The Republicans think they can get everything they want without compromise. And now they are even ready to literally bring Ukraine to its knees in a war, and in the process undermine our national security."

But the divisions in Congress are far from over.

The White House seems willing to offer major concessions on border policies. These include limits on the number of asylum seekers and accelerated deportations of undocumented migrants. But for Republicans, these changes are not enough.

According to CNN, among the demands of the Republican wing;

  • Powers that would allow border authorities to quickly turn back migrants at the Mexican border, something we have seen in the Covid era,
  • Electronic monitoring of those who are not detained and those who are released, including children,
  • Speeding up deportation processes,
  • Abolish parole, which allows immigrants to live temporarily in the United States with the President's approval,

changes such as.

The Biden Administration has accepted Ukrainians and Afghans fleeing war under this parole authority.

Republicans Are More Serious Than Ever.

In February 2022, when the Ukraine-Russia war broke out, the parties in Congress agreed to provide aid to Ukraine. In May of that year, a $40 billion aid package passed Congress by 367 votes to 57. But as the war dragged on, Republican lawmakers began to oppose aid to Ukraine. This approach, reminiscent of the 'America first' policy of the Trump era, led Republicans in Congress to reject an additional $300 million aid package for Ukraine last September.

While the war in Ukraine was going on, the Republicans were gaining more and more power in American politics and the Biden Administration started to receive criticism from all sides, especially for its border policies. Republicans accused Biden and the Democrats of spending more money instead of finding solutions to the problem. It is rumored that the Republican wing may have been encouraged by the statements of former President Donald Trump. In his statements, the former President criticized the government's support for Ukraine and claimed thathe would"end the war in 24 hours if he took office".

Source: White House, CNN, BBC, The Guardian

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