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Ocasio-Cortez, other progressive freshmen to oppose border bill

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezKamala Harris, Stacey Abrams among nominees for Time magazine's 2020 Person of the Year Ocasio-Cortez, Cruz trade jabs over COVID-19 relief: People 'going hungry as you tweet from' vacation Biden Cabinet picks largely unify Democrats — so far MORE (N.Y.) and three other progressive Democrats said Thursday they will vote against the bipartisan border deal because of its increased funding for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

Freshmen Reps. Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarBiden Cabinet picks largely unify Democrats — so far GOP congresswoman-elect wants to form Republican 'Squad' called 'The Force' OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Biden eyes new leadership at troubled public lands agency | House progressives tout their growing numbers in the chamber at climate rally | Trump administration pushes for rollback of Arctic offshore drilling regulations MORE (Minn.), Rashida TlaibRashida Harbi TlaibBiden Cabinet picks largely unify Democrats — so far Democrats brush off calls for Biden to play hardball on Cabinet picks GOP congresswoman-elect wants to form Republican 'Squad' called 'The Force' MORE (Mich.) and Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleyGOP congresswoman-elect wants to form Republican 'Squad' called 'The Force' Pelosi faces caucus divisions in Biden era Record number of Black women elected to Congress in 2020 MORE (Mass.), who along with Ocasio-Cortez have electrified the progressive wing of the Democratic base, said they are opposed to giving more money to DHS agencies like Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Customs and Border Protection (CBP).

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“The Department of Homeland Security has separated thousands of children from their parents, denied asylum to those fleeing danger, and used taxpayers’ dollars as a slush fund to incite terror in immigrant communities," the four lawmakers said in a statement. “By any reasonable measure, Donald Trump’s weaponization of ICE and CBP has been a failure. The Department of Homeland Security does not deserve an increase in funding, and that is why we intend to vote no on this funding package.”

Congress and President TrumpDonald John TrumpUSAID administrator tests positive for COVID-19 Kamala Harris, Stacey Abrams among nominees for Time magazine's 2020 Person of the Year DOJ appeals ruling preventing it from replacing Trump in E. Jean Carroll defamation lawsuit MORE have until Friday night to pass and sign a funding bill to avert a second partial government shutdown. Neither end of Pennsylvania Avenue has expressed much of an appetite for another closure, and Trump has signaled he intends to sign the deal.

A bipartisan conference committee reached a deal this week that would allocate $1.375 billion for border security, including 55 new miles of new fencing and $500 million in humanitarian assistance for migrants.

The deal also appropriates $14.9 billion to CBP and $7.6 billion to ICE, two agencies that have drawn the ire of progressive activists over their role in Trump’s efforts to ramp up detentions and deportations.

“We want to be abundantly clear: this is not a rebuke of federal workers or those who depend on the services they provide, but a rejection of the hateful policies, priorities, and rhetoric of the Trump Administration,” the congresswomen said in their statement.

The Democratic base was incensed over the Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” policy, which resulted in a spike in family separations at the U.S.-Mexico border. Democrats credit their messaging on immigration as a reason for their success in November’s midterm elections, when the party won back the House.