Cory Booker on Immigration
Mayor of Newark; N.J. Senator; 2020 presidential contender (withdrawn)
V.P. Joe Biden: If you cross the border illegally, you should be able to be sent back. It's a crime.
Booker: No, we are not going to just let people cross the border. An unlawful crossing is an unlawful crossing, if you do it in the civil courts or the criminal courts. The criminal courts is what is giving Donald Trump the ability to violate the human rights of people coming to our country. Doing it through the civil courts means that you won't need these awful detention facilities that I have been to; seeing children sleeping on pavement, people being put in cages, nursing mothers, small children.
Booker: This really irks me because I heard the vice president say that if you got a PhD., you can come right into this country. That's playing into what the Republicans want, to pit some immigrants against other immigrants. Some are from sh-thole countries and some are from worthy countries. We need to reform this whole immigration system and begin to be the country that says everyone has worth and dignity and this should be a country that honors for everyone.
Sen. Cory BOOKER: [SPEAKING IN SPANISH]: The situation right now is unacceptable. This president has attacked, has demonized immigrants. [SWITCHING TO ENGLISH]: I will make sure that, number one, we end the ICE policies and the Customs and Border Policies that are violating the human rights. When people come to this country, they do not leave their human rights at the border. Number two, I will make sure that we reinstate DACA, that we reinstate pathways to citizenship for DACA recipients. And then, finally, we need to make major investments in the Northern Triangle, not like this president is doing, by ripping away the resources we need to actually solve this problem. We cannot surrender our values and think that we're going to get border security. We actually will lose security and our values. We must fight for both.
Cory BOOKER: I agree on that issue, but folks should understand that the separation of children from families doesn't just go on at our border. It happens in our communities, as ICE are ripping away parents from their American children, spouses and the like, and are creating fear in cities all across this country. We must end those policies, as well. I have been to some of the largest private prisons and their immigration lockups. Our country has made so many mistakes by criminalizing things, whether it's immigration, whether it's mental illness, whether it's addiction. We know that this is not the way to deal with problems. There is a humane way that affirms human rights and human dignity and actually solves this problem.
In the wake of the Islamic State terrorist attacks in Paris, Christie and other Republican governors have said they won't accept any of at least 10,000 Syrian refugees that President Obama wants to allow to emigrate to the U.S. "I will fight anyone who wants to shut down this nation's open arms," Booker said.
Booker said that any refugee wanting to settle in the U.S. undergoes a background check of 18 months to two years. "There's a thorough vetting process,'' he said.
Booker was among the U.S. senators last month who supported emergency funding to help Syrian refugees. Booker was among the lawmakers in October who urged Obama to make it easier for refugees to reunite with relatives already in the U.S.
"My Police Department does not play an I.N.S. function," Mr. Booker said. "We are not to be running around doing interrogations about whether someone is documented or not."
This bill authorizes the Department of Justice (DOJ) to appoint or provide counsel at government expense to aliens in removal proceedings.
Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives: That the national emergency declared by the finding of the President on February 15, 2019, in Proclamation 9844 is hereby terminated.
Proclamation 9844 issued by the president on Feb. 15, 2019: Declares a state of national emergency at the southern border to address the issues of illegal immigration and criminal trafficking into the US: "The current situation at the southern border presents a border security and humanitarian crisis that threatens core national security interests and constitutes a national emergency. The southern border is a major entry point for criminals, gang members, and illicit narcotics. The problem of large-scale unlawful migration through the southern border is long-standing, and despite the executive branch's exercise of existing statutory authorities, the situation has worsened in certain respects in recent years. Because of the gravity of the current emergency situation, it is necessary for the Armed Forces to provide additional support to address the crisis."
Opposing the Proclamation (supporting the Resolution), ACLU press release, 2/15/2019 The ACLU issued the following statement upon filing a lawsuit: "By the president's very own admission in the Rose Garden, there is no national emergency. He just grew impatient and frustrated with Congress, and decided to move along his promise for a border wall 'faster.' This is a patently illegal power grab that hurts American communities and flouts the checks and balances that are hallmarks of our democracy."
Legislative outcome Passed House 245-182-5 roll #94 on Feb. 26; pass Senate 59-41 roll #49 on March 14; Vetoed by Pres. Trump; veto override failed, 248-181-3 (2/3 required), roll #127 on March 26
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Senate races 2019-20:
AK: Sullivan(R,incumbent) vs.Gross(I) vs.
AL: Jones(D,incumbent) vs.Tuberville(R) vs.
AR: Cotton(R,incumbent) vs.Harrington(L) vs.
AZ: McSally(R,incumbent) vs.Kelly(D)
CO: Gardner(R,incumbent) vs.Hickenlooper(D) vs.
DE: Coons(D,incumbent) vs.
GA-2: Isakson(R,resigned) Loeffler(R,appointed) vs.Warnock(D) vs.Collins(R) vs.Tarver(D) vs.
GA-6: Perdue(R,incumbent) vs.Ossoff(D) vs.Hazel(L) vs.Tomlinson(D) vs.Terry(D)
IA: Ernst(R,incumbent) vs.Greenfield(D) vs.
ID: Risch(R,incumbent) vs.Jordan(D) vs.
IL: Durbin(D,incumbent) vs.Curran(R) vs.
KS: Roberts(R,retiring) vs.Marshall(R) vs.Bollier(D) vs.
KY: McConnell(R,incumbent) vs.McGrath(D) vs.
LA: Cassidy(R,incumbent) vs.Perkins(D) vs.
MA: Markey(D,incumbent) vs.O`Connor(R) vs.Ayyadurai(R) vs.
ME: Collins(R,incumbent) vs.Gideon(D) vs.
MI: Peters(D,incumbent) vs.James(R) vs.Squier(G)
MN: Smith(D,incumbent) vs.Lewis(R) vs.Overby(G) vs.
MS: Hyde-Smith(R,incumbent) vs.Espy(D) vs.
MT: Daines(R,incumbent) vs.Bullock(D) vs.
NC: Tillis(R,incumbent) vs.Cunningham(D) vs.
NE: Sasse(R,incumbent) vs.Janicek(R)
NH: Shaheen(D,incumbent) vs.Messner(R) vs.
NJ: Booker(D,incumbent) vs.Mehta(R) vs.
NM: Udall(D,retiring) vs.Lujan(D) vs.Ronchetti(R) vs.Walsh(L) vs.
OK: Inhofe(R,incumbent) vs.Broyles(D) vs.
OR: Merkley(D,incumbent) vs.Perkins(R) vs.
RI: Reed(D,incumbent) vs.Waters(R)
SC: Graham(R,incumbent) vs.Harrison(D) vs.
SD: Rounds(R,incumbent) vs.Ahlers(D) vs.
TN: Alexander(R,retiring) vs.Hagerty(R) vs.Bradshaw(D) vs.
TX: Cornyn(R,incumbent) vs.Hegar(D) vs.
VA: Warner(D,incumbent) vs.
WV: Capito(R,incumbent) vs.Swearengin(D) vs.
WY: Enzi(R,retiring) vs.Lummis(R) vs.Ben-David(D) vs.
Senate Votes (analysis)