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Home / News / Politics / California Sen. Padilla blasts $118B border bill

California Sen. Padilla blasts $118B border bill

by HeyWire AI
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In what’s seen as a contentious period in U.S. politics, California Democratic Sen. Alex Padilla has emphatically criticized a key $118 billion border and foreign aid bill, which has stirred debate across party lines. The proposed legislation, negotiated over several months, received a mixed reaction from both Democrats and Republicans  

“It is critical that we support our allies in their fight to defend democracy and provide humanitarian relief, but not at the expense of dismantling our asylum system,” Padilla said in a statement Sunday, challenging the bill that could reshape U.S. border policy and significantly alter foreign aid distribution.

Advocates of the bill tout its potential to strengthen aid to Ukraine and other U.S. allies while tightening asylum restrictions amid high numbers of asylum seekers at the Mexico-U.S. border. Yet, Padilla, along with other Democrats and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, expressed concerns over provisions perceived as too restrictive on immigration and asylum rights. Notably, the bill does not provide a citizenship pathway for millions illegally in the country, including “Dreamers” and farm workers.

“The deal includes a new version of a failed Trump-era immigration policy that will cause more chaos at the border, not less,” Padilla emphasized, indicating the bill’s alignment with stringent GOP immigration priorities—a sharp deviation from Democratic stances. President Biden’s potential support for this conservative-leaning legislation signals a strategic maneuver hoping to mitigate the politically volatile issue of border control ahead of the anticipated 2024 presidential race.

Critiques from the Democratic side are echoed by opposition from key Republican figures claiming the bill doesn’t suffice. Former President Donald Trump, via a Truth Social post, pointedly dissuaded Republicans from backing it, labeling the legislation as “a Death Wish for The Republican Party,” revealing intra-party fractures.

Immigration policy remains a hot-button issue in the legislature, with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer set to bring the controversial bill to a test vote Wednesday. The Senate’s lean Democratic majority faces an uphill battle to secure the necessary 60 votes for advancement. Meanwhile, opposition from the House consolidated around Speaker Mike Johnson who unequivocally stated the bill would be “dead on arrival” if passed to the GOP-controlled chamber.

Aside from the political showdown, the bill advocates for an overhauled asylum system inclined towards expediency and stricter regulations. As proposed, it allows the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to initiate a “border shutdown” at record-highs of migrant arrests, enforcing immediate expulsion without asylum processing. A measure seemingly parallel to the Trump administration’s Title 42.

As reported by latimes.com, fresnobee.com, nbcphiladelphia.com

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