By Ted Hesson
May 16, 2017
CORNYN-MCCAUL BORDER BILL: Last week CNN reported that Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-Texas) and House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Michael McCaul (R-Texas) had begun work on a border security bill with input from the Trump administration. Morning Shift has now obtained an early “discussion draft.” It would expand use of mandatory detention, particularly for undocumented immigrants arrested within 100 miles of a border and from a country other than Mexico or Canada. One of the bill’s more draconian provisions deals with children who arrive at the border without a parent or guardian. To keep track of an unaccompanied minor aged 15-17, the child’s sponsors, typically family members, would be required to wear an ankle bracelet while the child remained in removal proceedings.
The draft legislation would provide U.S. Customs and Border Protection with numerous upgrades for infrastructure and technology, but no “big, beautiful” border wall. The draft measure would replace 71 miles of border fence, mostly with “bollard-style” fence (i.e., posts that allow agents to see through to the other side). The draft bill would also build 30 miles of “levee wall” in the Border Patrol’s Rio Grande Valley sector and six miles of new “vehicle” fence (i.e., fencing meant primarily to deter cars and trucks) in the Big Bend sector.
A congressional aide with knowledge of the bill said in an email: “The copy you have is really old and is nowhere near the current text, which is still being drafted.” Whether even a modified version of the bill might become law is far from clear. Democrats haven’t shown much desire to budge on border security without addressing the plight of the country’s 11 million undocumented immigrants — and that’s nowhere to be found in the discussion draft. Read it here.
For more information, go to: www.beverlyhillsimmigrationlaw.com