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Bipartisan bill to expand Title 42, latest sign of moderate Democratic opposition to Biden’s border move


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A bipartisan bill to expand Title 42, co-sponsored by five Senate Democrats, is the latest sign of opposition from the moderate Democratic opposition to the Biden administration’s decision to end the public health order. amid fears it could lead to an increase in migrants at the border.

The order was implemented in March 2020 by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and has been used by both the Trump and Biden administrations to quickly deport a majority of migrants to the border.

SEN TESTER BECOMES LATEST DEMOCRAT TO OPPOSE BIDEN’S MOVE TO END TITLE 42

The CDC announced last week that it would end the order on May 23, immediately sparking fears from both sides of the aisle, including within the Biden administration, that it would lead to an increase in border migration – in addition to the already massive numbers encountered by Border Patrol every day.

June 16, 2021: A Texas Department of Public Safety officer in Del Rio, Texas leads a group of migrants who have crossed the border and surrendered. (AP Photo/Eric Gay, File)
(AP Photo/Eric Gay, File)

Legislation introduced Thursday would extend Title 42 an additional 60 days and require the Department of Homeland Security to submit a plan to deal with an influx of post-Title 42 migrants.

SURVEILLANCE REPUBLICANS PUSH FOR ANSWERS ON DHS PLANS TO HANDLE BORDER SURGE WHEN TITLE 42 IS RAISED

The bill includes not only Republicans such as Sen. James Lankford, R-Okla., and Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, but also a number of Democrats: Sens Mark Kelly, D-Ariz., Kyrsten Sinema , D-Ariz., Jon Tester, D-Mont., Joe Manchin, DW.Va., and Maggie Hassan, DN.H.

All of these Democrats have already spoken about the bill. Manchin called the decision to end Title 42 “frightening.” Tester this week said he was “strongly opposed” to the move, while Hassan said ending the order “would likely lead to a wave of migrants that the administration doesn’t seem ready for.”

“The Biden administration was wrong to set an end date for Title 42 without a comprehensive plan in place,” Kelly said in a statement accompanying Thursday’s legislation.

REPUBLICAN STATES SUIT TO STOP LIFT OF TITLE 42 BORDER POLICY BY BIDEN ADMINISTRATION

“Arizona communities bear the brunt of the federal government’s failure at our border, so we are stepping in and protecting border communities by ensuring the administration works hand-in-hand with local leaders, law enforcement order and nonprofit organizations to put a comprehensive, workable plan in place before lifting Title 42, Sinema said.

Besides those sponsors, Sen. Raphael Warnock, D-Ga., reportedly said it was “the wrong time” to end the order, and Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto also voiced her opposition to the move. Both Democrats are in tight re-election races.

If all Democrats who voted against the decision vote for the bill, along with all Republicans, it would get 57 votes — just short of the 60 needed to smash a filibuster.

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But it marks the strongest example of bipartisan opposition to the administration’s immigration policies to date, which has largely divided lawmakers along party lines.

Meanwhile, a $10 billion COVID-19 relief bill is stalled in the Senate after Republicans united to pass an amendment aimed at stopping the administration from ending Title 42 — an amendment to which some Democrats would likely vote in favor of.

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