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Senate Democrats push Biden over raising refugee cap

Senate Democrats push Biden over raising refugee cap
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President BidenJoe BidenFauci says school should be open 'full blast' five days a week in the fall Overnight Defense: Military sexual assault reform bill has votes to pass in Senate l First active duty service member arrested over Jan. 6 riot l Israeli troops attack Gaza Strip Immigration experts say GOP senators questioned DHS secretary with misleading chart MORE is facing new pressure from Senate Democrats to increase the number of refugees being admitted into the United States.

Thirty-four Senate Democrats including Senate Majority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerBiden 'encouraged' by meeting with congressional leaders on infrastructure Republicans welcome the chance to work with Democrats on a bipartisan infrastructure bill Cheney sideshow distracts from important battle over Democrats' partisan voting bill MORE (D-N.Y.) sent a letter, spearheaded by Senate Democratic Whip Dick DurbinDick DurbinSweeping election reform bill faces Senate buzz saw Police reform talks hit familiar stumbling block Biden's internal polling touts public support for immigration reform MORE (D-Ill.), to Biden urging him to lift the cap on refugee admissions to 62,500 for the current fiscal year and to set it at a minimum of 125,000 for fiscal 2022, which starts Oct. 1.

"The United States must reject the previous Administration’s cruel legacy of anti-refugee policies and return to our longstanding bipartisan tradition of providing safety to the world’s most vulnerable refugees," the senators wrote in the letter, referring to the Trump administration's decision to set the cap at a historic low of 15,000.

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The letter comes after Biden sparked fierce backlash from Democrats when the White House, in a letter to the State Department, initially said it would keep the 15,000 former limit set under Trump.

The White House then walked that back saying Biden will announce a final decision on the refugee cap by May 15. 

The Washington Post reported Tuesday that it was again considering raising the refugee cap to 62,500, for the current fiscal year. Though White House press secretary Jen PsakiJen PsakiBiden says he and GOP both 'sincere about' seeking infrastructure compromise The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Colonial pays hackers as service is restored Colonial paid hackers almost M in ransom: report MORE didn't dispute that, she warned reported that it would be "challenging." 

“If the cap is close to that or at that, it will continue to be challenging but there are considerations including the message we are sending to the world and also the need to get the muscles working in the system in the federal government but also with the important partners out there in the United States and around the world that play an important role in refugees traveling to the United States,” Psaki told reporters.

Biden pledged as a presidential candidate to increase the cap to 125,000, adding that he was committed to raising that number over time. The administration then proposed in February raising the ceiling to 62,500 for the 2021 fiscal year.

In addition to Schumer and Durbin, Democratic Sens. Patrick LeahyPatrick Joseph LeahyBiden officials testify that white supremacists are greatest domestic security threat Senate Democrats push Biden over raising refugee cap On The Money: Democratic scramble complicates Biden's human infrastructure plan | Progressives push on student debt relief MORE (Vt.), Kirsten GillibrandKirsten GillibrandOvernight Defense: Military sexual assault reform bill has votes to pass in Senate l First active duty service member arrested over Jan. 6 riot l Israeli troops attack Gaza Strip Military sexual assault reform bill has votes to pass in Senate Army secretary nominee concerned about 'unreasonable or unhelpful demands' on National Guard MORE (N.Y.), Alex PadillaAlex PadillaHispanic Caucus endorses essential worker immigration bill Padilla introduces bill to expand California public lands Senate Democrats push Biden over raising refugee cap MORE (Calif.), Ben CardinBenjamin (Ben) Louis CardinHouse panel advances bipartisan retirement savings bill Senate passes bipartisan B water infrastructure bill Senate Democrats push Biden over raising refugee cap MORE (Md.), Ed MarkeyEd MarkeySenators ask airlines to offer cash refunds for unused flight credits Civilian Climate Corps can help stem rural-urban divide Senate votes to nix Trump rule limiting methane regulation MORE (Mass), Mazie HironoMazie Keiko HironoMore than 75 Asian, LGBTQ groups oppose anti-Asian crime bill Biden-McConnell cold war unlikely to end at White House If you want Julie Su at the DOL, don't point to her resume MORE (Hawaii), Sheldon WhitehouseSheldon WhitehouseJudge's decision on Barr memo puts spotlight on secretive DOJ office On The Money: Incomes, consumer spending soared in March | Harris, senators work behind scenes on jobs package | Biden cancels some border wall construction Harris, senators work behind scenes on jobs package MORE (R.I.), Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerBiden signs executive order to improve federal cybersecurity Overnight Defense: Former Pentagon chief to testify about Capitol riot Wednesday | Senate Intelligence chairman wants Biden to review US Space Command move Wyden: Funding infrastructure with gas tax hike a 'big mistake' MORE (Va.), Ron WydenRonald (Ron) Lee WydenGOP governors move to cut unemployment benefits as debate rages over effects Senate Finance Committee to consider clean energy legislation this month Hillicon Valley: Global cybersecurity leaders say they feel unprepared for attack | Senate Commerce Committee advances Biden's FTC nominee Lina Khan | Senate panel approves bill that would invest billions in tech MORE (Ore.), Richard Blumenthal (Conn.), Chris CoonsChris Andrew CoonsBiden to go one-on-one with Manchin US, Iran signal possible breakthroughs in nuke talks How the United States can pass Civics 101 MORE (Del.), Amy KlobucharAmy Klobuchar Klobuchar offers tribute to her father, who died Wednesday The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Cheney poised to be ousted; Biden to host big meeting Senate panel deadlocks in vote on sweeping elections bill MORE (Minn.), Chris Van HollenChristopher (Chris) Van HollenFinancial market transactions should not be taxed or restricted Van Hollen says members should stand with Cheney on election claims Democratic fissures start to show after Biden's first 100 days MORE (Md.), Cory BookerCory BookerPolice reform talks hit familiar stumbling block Almost 20 advocacy groups team up to pressure Congress to pass health care bill for immigrants Biden adds pressure to congressional talks with self-imposed deadlines MORE (N.J.), Jon OssoffJon OssoffDC statehood bill picks up Senate holdout Senate panel deadlocks in vote on sweeping elections bill Senate descends into hours-long fight over elections bill MORE (Ga.), Tammy BaldwinTammy Suzanne BaldwinSenate Democrats offer bill to scrap tax break for investment managers Senate Democrats push Biden over raising refugee cap House Dems to unveil drug pricing measure ahead of Biden package MORE (Wis.), Raphael WarnockRaphael WarnockDC statehood bill picks up Senate holdout Georgia senators introduce measure allowing voters to have access to water while waiting Cruz outspending other senators on Facebook ads: report MORE (Ga.), Jack ReedJack ReedBiden officials testify that white supremacists are greatest domestic security threat Overnight Defense: US fires 30 warning shots at Iranian boats | Kabul attack heightens fears of Afghan women's fates | Democratic Party leaders push Biden on rejoining Iran deal Overnight Defense: Former Navy secretary reportedly spent .4M on travel | Ex-Pentagon chief Miller to testify on Jan. 6 Capitol attack | Austin to deliver West Point commencement speech MORE (R.I.), Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinIf you want Julie Su at the DOL, don't point to her resume Senate Democrats push Biden over raising refugee cap Lawmakers react to guilty verdict in Chauvin murder trial: 'Our work is far from done' MORE (Calif.), Chris MurphyChristopher (Chris) Scott MurphySweeping election reform bill faces Senate buzz saw Kabul attack spurs fears over fate of Afghan women as US exits Sen. 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