The highlight of the coming week's immigration- and refugee-related legislative action is House floor consideration of a joint resolution disapproving of the President's border wall emergency declaration which, if passed, would force Senate action within two weeks.
House Action Disapproving of Border Wall Emergency Declaration and Multiple Hearings, including Hearings on Unaccompanied and Separated Children, Highlight the Week Ahead
Sunday, February 24, 2019
Also happening this week are a number of hearings touching on important aspects of U.S. migration policy and the Trump Administration's conduct of that policy, including hearings on the separation of families at the U.S. border with Mexico; the Administration's treatment of unaccompanied alien children; the impact of the President's emergency declaration on military readiness; the worldwide crisis facing refugees, asylum seekers, and other migrants; and the humanitarian situation in Venezuela.
Negotiators Reach "Agreement in Principle" to Fund 55 Miles of New Fencing Along the Southwest Border and Fund Remaining Un-Enacted
FY '19 Appropriations Bill
Tuesday, February 12, 2019
The agreement was reached between House-Senate conferees H.J. Res. 31, a shell bill that originally was passed to provide stop-gap funding for the Department of Homeland Security. If the agreement is enacted into law, it would prevent a looming partial shutdown of the federal government that is set to begin at Midnight on Friday, February 15th. However, at the time of this writing, the text of the measure was not completed, it was unclear whether there are sufficient votes in the house to pass it, there was uncertainty over whether the President would sign or veto it, and a threat by the President to commandeer funds previously appropriated for other purposes to construct his proposed border wall loomed over the proceedings.
Negotiations Over a FY '19 Border Security and Consolidated Appropriations Agreement and the Confirmation of a New Attorney General Highlight the Coming Week's Capitol Hill Immigration
and Refugee Action
Sunday, February 10, 2019
Tuesday's funeral for the late former Representative John Dingell, Jr. (D-MI), the longest serving Member of Congress in the nation's history makes for an abbreviated week this week, with several hearings that would have examined immigration-related matters being postponed to dates that had yet to be determined at the time of this writing.
In all, from the perspective of those interested in immigration, refugee, homeland security, or human trafficking policy, the week's schedule includes three hearings (all likely to be postponed), one business meeting during which a key nomination will be considered, one likely conference committee meeting, and possible floor action on two matters of possible consequence on those subjects.
House Passes "Victim-Centered" Anti-Human Trafficking Bill
Friday, February 8, 2019
H.R. 507 was introduced in the House by Representative Karen Bass (D-CA), who chairs the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations.
It was More of the Same on Immigration for
Trump in His Third Address to a
Joint Meeting of Congress
Wednesday, February 6, 2019
Notably absent from his Address, however, was an announcement that he had repeatedly hinted at during the days leading up to Tuesday night; He did not announce that he was declaring a national emergency and commandeering previously appropriated funds so he could build his proposed wall.
Tuesday;s speech was the President's second State of the Union Address. However, it was his third time addressing a joint meeting of Congress. As is typical for first-term Presidents, he delivered an address during his first months in office in 2017 that was not officially designated a State of the Union Address.
Trump Likely to Stress Immigration in
His Third Address to a Joint
Meeting of Congress
Monday, February 4, 2019
From the perspective of those interested in immigration policy, it is a given that President Trump will speak harshly about immigrants and immigration during the Address. He always has during his "big stage" events. For them, the biggest question hanging over the evening is the matter of whether the President will follow through with hints he made in the week leading up to Tuesday night that he will use the Address to declare that a national emergency exists along the border, assert that he will commandeer funds previously appropriated for other purposes to build his wall along the U.S. border, and order U.S. military forces to construct the wall.
State of the Union Address, Examination of the Administration's Family Separation Policy, and Deliberations on Border Security Funding Highlight the Coming Week's Capitol Hill Immigration
and Refugee Action
Sunday, February 3, 2019
Both are scheduled for the evening of Tuesday, February 5th.
The President and his staff have strong;y suggested that he will use the Address as an opportunity to highlight what has become the signature issue of his presidency: his demand that Congress appropriate funds for the construction of a wall along much of the border between the U.S. and Mexico. And the President has hinted that he may use the occasion to declare a national emergency that would permit him to commandeer federal resources and use the military to construct the wall that Congress has so far refused to fund.
Negotiators Stake Out Positions in First Meeting
of House-Senate Conferees on Border Security Funding As Trump Escalates Threats
Friday, February 1, 2019
Senators and Representatives of both parties staked out their opening positions but dealt with little substance during the first meeting of a House-Senate conference committee that has been established to strike a deal on border security funding. The meeting was held on Wednesday, January 30th and was followed throughout the remainder of the week by the preparation of a formal offer from House Democrats that rejects President Trump's call for funding for a wall and a declaration from the President that the whole thing was "a waste of time."
A rarity on Capitol Hill these days, the conference committee is charged with ironing out differences between the President and Democrats in Congress over President Donald J. Trump's Fiscal Year 2019 border security funding demands. The conferees are working under a deadline of February 15, 2019, when a short-term continuing appropriations resolution that re-opened previously shuttered functions of the federal government expires. Should Congress fail to act by that date, another shutdown of federal functions would be triggered.