Florida Republicans push Biden to implement Trump order on Venezuela

Florida Republicans push Biden to implement Trump order on Venezuela
© Greg Nash

Florida Republicans and others are pushing the Biden administration to implement a last-minute order from former President TrumpDonald TrumpJulian Castro knocks Biden administration over refugee policy Overnight Energy & Environment — League of Conservation Voters — Climate summit chief says US needs to 'show progress' on environment Five takeaways from Arizona's audit results MORE blocking deportations of Venezuelans.

The order, signed by Trump on his last full day in office, defers deportation of some 145,000 Venezuelans for 18 months, blaming leader Nicolás Maduro for “the worst humanitarian crisis in the Western Hemisphere in recent memory.”

Even as Biden rushes to undo a number of Trump’s immigration policies, his Venezuela order remains in limbo.


The memo left the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) responsible for developing the guidelines of the program and ensuring work authorizations for those impacted by the order — something that has not yet happened under Biden.

“Many of our constituents are now awaiting guidance on the important particulars of their new ... status, such as the documentation required, procedures that must be followed, and how to obtain work authorization,” lawmakers wrote in a letter to DHS spearheaded by Rep. Mario Diaz-BalartMario Rafael Diaz-BalartDefense contractors ramp up donations to GOP election objectors Bottom line GOP lawmakers ask Biden administration for guidance on reopening cruise industry MORE (R-Fla.).

“Both the well-being of the American people and the perilous situation in Venezuela merits allowing Venezuelan nationals to remain in the United States."

The letter was also signed by Florida GOP Reps. Carlos Gimenez, Maria Elvira Salazar and Michael WaltzMichael WaltzGOP senators unveil bill designating Taliban as terrorist organization How lawmakers aided the Afghan evacuation Defense & National Security — The mental scars of Afghanistan MORE along with Del. Jenniffer González-Colón (R-Puerto Rico).

Under the Biden administration, the State Department continues to recognize opposition leader Juan Guaidó as Venezuela’s interim president and Secretary of State Antony BlinkenAntony BlinkenDefense policy bill would require 'forever chemical' testing at military sites Biden criticizes treatment of Haitians as 'embarrassment' Overnight Energy & Environment — Presented by the League of Conservation Voters — EPA finalizing rule cutting HFCs MORE referred to Maduro as a “brutal dictator.”


DHS did not respond to request for comment, but Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro MayorkasAlejandro MayorkasJulian Castro knocks Biden administration over refugee policy Overnight Defense & National Security — Presented by AM General — The Quad confab Mayorkas defends Biden policies on migrants in tense White House briefing MORE previously dinged the Trump administration for failing to provide protections to Venezuelans in the U.S.

“By deporting Cubans seeking asylum in our country and refusing to grant protected status to Venezuelans in the U.S., he inflicts harm on the very people our humanitarian laws were designed to protect,” Mayorkas wrote in an op-ed in Univision in September, calling for the Trump administration to grant Temporary Protected Status to Venezuelans. 

“I have confidence in the dignity and humanity with which Joe BidenJoe BidenFighter jet escorts aircraft that entered restricted airspace during UN gathering Julian Castro knocks Biden administration over refugee policy FBI investigating alleged assault on Fort Bliss soldier at Afghan refugee camp MORE will apply our laws to Cuban and Venezuelan families in need of protection,” he wrote.