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Senate Appropriators Want $1B for Unaccompanied Illegal Immigrant Children

Republicans say the crisis, which could top 60,000 kids, is "directly the result of Obama's own policies."

by
Bill Straub

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June 12, 2014 - 5:04 pm
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WASHINGTON – Senate appropriators are moving toward a $1.03 billion spending increase to address the healthcare and shelter needs of thousands of unaccompanied alien children streaming across the nation’s southern border.

The Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services and Education approved a spending plan this week that includes an attempt to tackle what lawmakers described as “an emergency situation by any definition.”

“Beginning in 2012, we saw a dramatic increase in the number of children fleeing escalating gang and drug violence in Central America, seeking relief in the United States and to reunite with families already living here,” said Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), the subcommittee chairman. “This is an urgent humanitarian crisis.”

The 2015 spending proposal includes $1.94 billion for the Unaccompanied Alien Children program, a $1.03 billion increase over the comparable fiscal year 2014 level. In addition, the committee expanded the authority of agencies to transfer funds if current trends continue, providing additional opportunities to increase shelter capacity and offer critical support services for children in the care of the Department of Health and Human Services if necessary.

The subcommittee intends to offset the increase by cutting other programs in the $156.7 billion spending package.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), who supported the funding increase, said the recent influx of tens of thousands of children entering the country without their parents “has resulted in emergency situations in border states. Federal, state and local officials need increased resources to properly shelter, feed and clothe these children as they work to find solutions to these heartbreaking situations.”

“Providing sufficient funding for child advocates and legal services is essential to ensure children have adequate representation and support as their immigration cases make their way through the judicial process,” she said.

The Obama administration has reported that more than 47,000 children have illegally crossed the southern border unaccompanied by their parents since Oct. 1 — a 92 percent increase over the same period in 2013. More than 33,000 have been apprehended along the Rio Grande during that period.

In May alone, about 9,500 children were taken into custody by the Department of Homeland Security and transferred to the care of the Department of Health and Human Services — a more than 300 percent increase over May 2013 and 150 percent more than the total number of children in all of fiscal year 2011. Most are arriving from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras.

Authorities expect as many as 60,000 unaccompanied children will cross the Mexican border illegally by year’s end.

Those apprehended are being warehoused in what generally are considered untenable, unsanitary conditions.

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said his office remains vigilant regarding the latest trends and challenges to border security and that he is “closely monitoring” the substantial increase in the numbers of unaccompanied children “who are some of the most vulnerable individuals who interact with our immigration system.”

Johnson said he is particularly focused on the emerging situation in the Rio Grande Valley.

“On Sunday, May 11th, I traveled to McAllen, Texas to view the situation and saw the children there first hand – an overwhelming number of whom were under twelve years old,” Johnson said. “I have taken steps across the department and in coordination with federal partners to immediately address this issue.”

At the direction of President Obama, Johnson said he established an interagency coordination group, led by Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Craig Fugate, to ensure that federal agencies are unified in providing relief to the affected children.

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Top Rated Comments   
Barack Hussein Obama
Human Trafficker and Child Exploiter.
27 weeks ago
27 weeks ago Link To Comment
What humanitarian "crisis" do the lying Woodstock Jihadists claim?

Drugs and gangs in Central America, so they drop off their kids to head to Chicago, LA and NY?

Give me a break. And a billion dollars EXTRA for 50,000 kids...then how much does it cost the CITIZEN taxpayer for 14 million border crashers?

Why have an immigration line at all? In order to stop Asian valedictorians and Filipina nurses from flooding our universities and broken healthcare, crumbling economy and disintegrating cities with law abiding, patriotic and tax paying cultures?

Don't you DARE blame this on Republicans or conservatives...Woodstock swine. This is ALL on you.

Your policies suck and you suck as humans.
27 weeks ago
27 weeks ago Link To Comment
Healthcare? Shelter? How about putting Em on a bus
And dropping them off back in Tijuana or Nueva
Laredo? Let the Mexican govt. Provide for them.
It's not our problem.
27 weeks ago
27 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (45)
All Comments   (45)
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How's that Hopey-Changee thing working out for you?
27 weeks ago
27 weeks ago Link To Comment
There are 8 million people in Honduras. The average per capita income is US$2,200 per year. Use the $1 billion to relocate all illegals to a tent city in Honduras. Leave them there. Do not pay the Hondurans. Do not charge the Hondurans for our costs of dealing with their illegal lawbreaking citizens. Their payment will be their acceptance of one non-Honduran illegal for each Honduran illegal transported back. We will not charge for the tent city.
Repeat above for Guatemala and El Salvador. Name the three Tent Cities: Reidville; Holderville and Obamaville. Give every family food for one month. Tools to build water and sewer facilities, fishing equipment and seeds to plant. Tell them the next time they illegally enter the U.S they will be transported to the Mexican side of the U.S. Mexican border and will be forced to build a fence. Tell Mexico that we will assume control of 2 mile sections of Mexican land adjacent the border for fence construction purposes since Mexican crime and law-breaking is an attack on our national sovereignty.
Yes, this is imperialism. Imperialism in the defense of our country by law breaking aliens is no vice.
27 weeks ago
27 weeks ago Link To Comment
Obama has deported more undocumented immigrants than any other president. Currently we have the lowest levels of border crossings since 1971. It is not Obama's fault that Republicans, for political reasons, are holding up a comprehensive or even piece meal immigration reform. This is clearly Republicans fault. Their approach to all broken things is to do nothing it seems.
27 weeks ago
27 weeks ago Link To Comment
Hellooo, baaaaby.

Obama doesn't see illegal aliens. He sees dreamers. I see a nightmare in the White House. We need to send every undocumented invader who came in in the last five to seven years back to and/or through Mexico with the active participation and monetary support of Mexico. They helped the U.S. create this insanity, now both of us must pay. I don't want to hear Bush did it. Numerous presidents (Mexican and U.S.) of both parties in the recent past are responsible.
27 weeks ago
27 weeks ago Link To Comment
In the old days when a nation caused financial damage to another, the injured party would land troops and collect taxes or do something until the debt is paid. Gang and drug violence in Central America grows. I am sure the victimized countries can be persuaded to take temporary membership in the US Commonwealth as Category IV members. Send in aid to make law enforcement functional against gangs, grafters, and crony capitalists. Those who fled can go back home.
27 weeks ago
27 weeks ago Link To Comment
Where did this number come from? That basically boils down to $219,148 per child. And you know that if there's excess money in the budget, someone will find a way to spend it.
27 weeks ago
27 weeks ago Link To Comment
How, and why, are they crossing the border unimpeded?
27 weeks ago
27 weeks ago Link To Comment
They cut VA budgets, veteran cares, cut military pays, creates a human crisis in the southern borders to placate Obama's base. Democrats' "future rest" on DREAMers, Democrats need a continuous stream of illegals to vote for them.
27 weeks ago
27 weeks ago Link To Comment
I think this bill may tip the issue: it would be like paying visiting burglars....
27 weeks ago
27 weeks ago Link To Comment
This bill belongs to the countries from where these people came. That and the cost involved in providing a ticket home!
27 weeks ago
27 weeks ago Link To Comment
Take that 1.03 billion and hand it to our vets. Load those kids up and send 'em back home. Forget the burritos, feed them rice and beans like they get at home and I do not care if it is cold.
We have enough problems in our country without dealing with a bunch of illegal aliens.
27 weeks ago
27 weeks ago Link To Comment
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