Sens. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) and James Risch (R-Idaho) blamed President Obama’s executive actions for the influx of child immigrants being detained along the U.S.-Mexico border.
“The administration has repeatedly disregarded U.S. immigration laws in pursuit of its own immigration agenda,” Crapo said Monday. “The crisis we are seeing along our nation’s southern border is a direct consequence of the president’s end-run around Congress to enact immigration reform, in particular the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).
Crapo and Risch said that policy change is what has encouraged nearly 60,000 unaccompanied child immigrants from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala to make the arduous journey to America even though they wouldn’t qualify to stay under the deferred action program.
The White House asked Congress for nearly $3.7 billion to provide legal services and temporarily house and feed the children until their deportation hearings, but Republicans balked at that number, saying the Obama was asking for a “blank check.”
“The U.S. is experiencing a tragedy along its border which did not need to happen,” Risch said. “President Obama can fix this, but his proposal for $3.6 billion was a bad deal. It throws good money after bad, and it ignores the policy changes that are required to solve this humanitarian crisis.”
Last week, the House approved a more than $600 million emergency spending bill for the crisis, but included reforms to a 2008 human trafficking law in order to expedite the deportation of the children. The House also voted to end funding for Obama’s DACA program.