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Ranking Member Jayapal Statement on Proposed Threats to Asylum System in Supplemental Aid Package Negotiations

WASHINGTON – Today, Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal (WA-07), Ranking Member of the Immigration Integrity, Security, and Enforcement, issued the following statement in response to reports proposed changes to asylum, the establishment of Safe Third Country Agreements, and parole in Supplemental Aid Package negotiations.

“Since September I have been clear, I will not support immigration policy change as part of the President’s supplemental aid request.  The proposed changes would decimate our asylum system, return us to Trump-era policies of “transit bans” and further eliminate essential legal pathways. None of these changes would even address the so-called border crisis. Trading Ukraine aid for harmful immigration policies as part of a supplemental aid package is the wrong approach to take if we really want to create sensible immigration policy.  

“The correct course of action would be to reform the underlying immigration system – which has not been modernized for 30 years – by providing more legal pathways for people to come to the US, modernizing the system for people to be able to work and be with their families, and providing targeted strategic aid to countries to deal with political instability corruption, climate change, and other factors that drive people to flee. Coupling devastating Trump-era border policies with a supplemental funding package is wrong and refusing to include even a single positive immigration proposal makes it even worse.

“House Democrats have consistently offered and passed bipartisan solutions. If the Senate really wants to make progress on immigration, it can carve out the filibuster right now and pass with a simple majority the bipartisan bills that have passed the House numerous times, including the Dream and Promise Act and the Farmworker Modernization Act. This would show people that real, necessary, and thoughtful reforms of the immigration system are possible, instead of giving in to Republican hostage taking on crucial policy issues as part of a supplemental funding bill.

“Throwing immigrants under the bus—including those who helped give Democrats the White House and Senate and will be expected to again—is bad politics and bad policy. I will not vote for a package that includes harmful immigration policies.”