Harlingen, Texas (KVEO)—U.S. Senator John Cornyn, Representatives Henry Cuellar, and Tony Gonzales announced the introduction of a bill in response to the migrant surge at the Southern Border, during a virtual press conference on Thursday morning.
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According to Cornyn, the Bipartisan Border Solutions Act is aimed to improve both the capacity to manage migration surges and adjudicate asylum claims in a timely manner, protect unaccompanied migrant children, reduce the impact on local communities, ensure migrants are treated fairly and humanely, and ultimately deter those who do not have realistic asylum claims from placing themselves in danger by making the treacherous journey to our southern border.
“The bill would create four new regional processing centers for high traffic areas during surges,” said Cornyn. “They would be given the means to understand what laws are and an opportunity to present any legitimate claims for asylum at the regional processing centers.”
“We want to reduce wait times for people that have legitimate claims,” said Cornyn. “We want to hire more immigration judge team and asylum officer.”
The Southern Border is now, more than ever, a political hot spot.
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Congressman Gonzales said he worries about what takes place once unaccompanied minors leave the migrant facility.
“Are they going to be a forgotten generation of children?” said Gonzales. “We want to see the follow-up that takes place to ensure they are left in a safe home.”
Congressman Cuellar is also one of the few Democrats calling the influx of unaccompanied children crossing the Rio Grande “a crisis.”
“The concept that we have is well thought off,” said Cuellar. “We want to give it a try, and we hope the administration will work with us.”
Cuellar has asked the Biden administration to acknowledge the strain on border services by releasing photos of overcrowding at the Donna, Texas migrant facility.
U.S. Senators Ted Cruz and Cornyn visited the Rio Grande Valley last month.
Together, the lawmakers condemned the Biden administration for the events occurring with migrants at the Southern Border.
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Cornyn echoed that sentiment during the press conference and stated this situation has put a strain on Border Patrol officials as well as migrants who are being contained in closed areas.
In 2019, Cornyn and Cuellar announce launched the Helping Unaccompanied Minors and Alleviating National Emergency Act (HUMANE ACT).
The proposed bill calls for 600 CBP personnel and at least two immigration judges at each of the regional processing Centers.
The HUMANE ACT looks to prioritize the unification of family units and processing of unaccompanied minors.