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House Passes Emergency Funding to Stop USCIS Furloughs

The House's bill would help USCIS cover its $1.2 billion shortfall and prevent furloughs, but the Senate won't return until September to vote on it

Mazin Sidahmed

Aug 24, 2020

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The House on Saturday passed a bill to provide emergency funding to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, which is set to furlough almost 70% of its staff on Aug. 31. The Senate won’t return until September to vote on the bill, though any senator can bring it up and ask for it to be passed through unanimous consent. USCIS claims it has a $1.2 billion budget shortfall, meaning it would have to furlough 13,400 employees and effectively bring the immigration system to a halt. But the fee-funded agency has recently brought in $800 million more than it projected, leaving some lawmakers to say a furlough is unnecessary, with or without a bill from Congress. A bipartisan group of House and Senate lawmakers sent Secretary Chad Wolf and USCIS Head Joe Edlow a letter on Friday asking them to put off the furloughs. The Wall Street Journal

In other federal immigration news…

Biden to Undo Trump’s Immigration Policies

If elected president, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden will likely rescind most of Trump’s immigration policies, as many of them were made through the executive branch. But other legislation Biden wants to pass, such as a pathway to citizenship for 11 million undocumented immigrants, will be hard to do if Democrats do not win back the Senate. The Wall Street Journal

Trump’s Sister Criticizes Immigration Policies

Trump’s niece Mary L. Trump recently recorded the president’s sister, former judge Maryanne Trump Barry, saying her brother has “no principles.” Maryanne Trump Barry criticized his immigration policies and “what they’re doing with kids at the border,” and guessed her brother “hasn’t read my immigration opinions” in court cases. Maryanne Trump also once berated a judge for failing to treat an asylum applicant respectfully. Mary Trump surreptitiously recorded around 15 hours of conversation with her aunt. The Washington Post

Tlaib Calls for Lebanese to be Allowed to Stay

Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) led 80 members of Congress in sending a letter to President Donald Trump asking that Lebanese nationals living temporarily in the U.S. be allowed to remain because of the recent explosion in Beirut. Detroit Free-Press

Mazin Sidahmed

Mazin Sidahmed is the co-executive director of Documented. He previously worked for the Guardian US in New York. He started his career writing for The Daily Star in Beirut and he also contributed to Politico New York.




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