_Please consider signing and sharing widely our petition to say “no” to Trump’s harmful border wall - and “yes” to Dreamers, border communities and wildlife.
_Joanna Williams, of Kino Border Initiative and SBCC steering committee member, was quoted about the heartbreaking trials and tribulations deported parents endure to regain custody of their U.S.-born children.
_Is the Queen Wearing Clothes? There are all kinds of procedural tricks up congressional sleeves and the latest one we saw this week is called the “Queen of the Hill,” which was proposed by Rep. Jeff Denham (R-CA). In short, the procedure allows bills to be considered on the House floor for a vote without going through the regular committee process or even getting leadership approval. House Resolution 774_which has 39 co-sponsors at this time_would bring four immigration and border-related bills to the floor for a vote: (1) the over-the-top, extremist HR 4760 - Securing America’s Future Act introduced by Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), (2) the bipartisan, bicameral HR 3440 - Dream Act introduced by Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA) and Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), (3) the bipartisan, bicameral HR 4796 - Uniting and Securing America (USA) Act introduced by Will Hurd (R-TX) and Pete Aguilar (D-CA), and (4) a yet-to-be-known immigration bill chosen by House Speaker Paul Ryan. The bill that gets the highest number of votes past the 218 minimum gets passed by the House and is thus dubbed the “Queen (Bill) of the Hill.” Need me to draw a chart? Unclear if this will move forward, but if Congress plays this ace, we’re hoping that the Queen is bipartisan and not unilateral and authoritarian.
_”We don’t need his racist wall.” As you may know, Trump visited Southern California and checked out the eight border wall prototypes that have been built and “tested” on Otay Mesa. Well, we weren’t going to stay quiet about an idea that is fundamentally flawed and harmful to border communities and our environment. “We don’t need his racist walls,” said Pedro Rios, who coordinated a press conference at Barrio Logan’s Chicago Park, is director of the American Friends Service Committee’s U.S.-Mexico border program, and is an SBCC steering committee member. Andrea Guerrero, executive director at Alliance San Diego and SBCC co-chair, wrote a critical OpEd and told NPR, “The wall is more than a wall. In the shadow of that wall, a deportation force is growing and it is ripping families from one another. It is devastating communities well within the interior of the United States.” We also issued this release.
_Otra vez la burra al trigo. One of my favorite sayings in Spanish literally translates to “there again goes the donkey eating wheat,” which roughly refers to someone who is obsessed with an issue or a question (like kids that ask “why?” over and over again). But most adults find obsessive questions pretty annoying (am I right?). And besides, wheat straw is hard to chew for donkeys and can upset their tummies..but, you know, they just like how it tastes. Well, that’s kind of a good metaphor for Trump again proposing this week temporary DACA protections in exchange for his harmful border wall. Chew on that for a bit.
__Show me the money. Members of Congress have voiced confidence they will indeed meet the March 23 deadline to pass a spending bill to keep the government running until the end of fiscal year 2018, which ends in September. In the fairly secretive, high-level negotiations to reach agreement on an omnibus spending bill, we’ve heard rumors that Republicans have put forth around 100 riders, including several escalating border enforcement and one that aims to defund Planned Parenthood, but it seems that congressional leadership would prefer to keep the omnibus relatively clean to ensure it will pass quickly and does not force another continuing resolution. We hope that Congress doesn’t throw ‘good money after bad’ and steers clear of tacking on senseless, harmful funding for Trump’s deportation force, detention beds, and border militarization.
_Call to #DefundHate. The negotiations on the spending bill are so secretive that it is hard to know if funding will be dedicated to a border wall (it’s rumored Democrats might give in to the $1.6 billion request for the wall), an increase in ICE detention beds, or an increase in ICE and CBP officers and agents. Our biggest fear is that the negotiations will add gobs more funding to Trump’s deportation force, with little to no funding for urgent CBP reforms or adequate accountability and oversight. Please (please!) pick up that phone and tell your congressional representatives to defund Trump’s deportation machine, by cutting funding for CBP and ICE. Instead of more agents, more wall, and more beds, Congress must dedicate resources to strengthen CBP oversight and accountability to prevent abuse and unnecessary injuries and deaths. #WallsDontWork #DefundHate #RevitalizeNotMilitarize
border_lines is published every Friday for your reading pleasure. If you’d like to submit an item for inclusion, please email Vicki B. Gaubeca at [email protected], by Wednesday COB.