Senate Judiciary Chair Lindsay Graham announced on Sunday that he will introduce an immigration bill this week that will overhaul U.S. immigration system.
“We’re going to change the asylum law, that you have to apply in the country where you live, or in Mexico,” Graham said. “We’re going to stop Central American applications being made at the border, because we don’t have enough judges for hearing dates. We’re gonna go to 100 days, we can hold minor children for 100 days so we can actually process the entire family without letting them go. We’re gonna increase judges by 500; we got almost 900,000 backlog of asylum claims. We’re gonna wipe out the backlog [of asylum claims.]”
Graham continued: “If you’re an unaccompanied minor, we’re going to send you back to Central America as if you lived in Mexico, which would be a change in our laws. This should stop 90 percent of the illegal immigration from Central America.”
Does Graham think the legislation will be supported by the Democrats? “We got a 900,000-person backlog. I’m going to have 500 immigration judges to clear the backlog. If you got a better idea, say so. It is not a manufactured crisis. I want to start a debate on how to fix this problem before it just swamps the border.”
Graham acknowledged that asylum seekers are not just trying to sneak across the border but are simply looking for border patrol agents to turn themselves over to the system once they cross the border. They know that they will be released into the U.S. to wait as their asylum claim is adjudicated.
“Nobody ever shows up for the hearing,” Graham said. “So we’re going to change the asylum law that you have to apply in the country where you live, or Mexico. We’re going to stop Central American applications being made at the border, because we don’t have enough judges for hearing dates.”
Graham estimates his new legislation should drop the number of people showing up at the border by 90%. The Senate Judiciary Committee will have a hearing on his bill and then take a vote. The bill would then proceed to the entire Senate for approval.
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