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Lankford defends border bill after attacks by Donald Trump and other Republicans - The Washington Post

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  jbb  •  4 weeks ago  •  16 comments

By:   Amy B Wang (Washington Post)

Lankford defends border bill after attacks by Donald Trump and other Republicans - The Washington Post
Lankford, a key negotiator on the bipartisan deal, said his Republican colleagues who have criticized the measure are misunderstanding it.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T


'We all have an oath to the Constitution and we have a commitment to say we're going to do whatever we can to be able to secure the border,' the senator from Oklahoma says.


9deae4bf-86c8-4f49-8658-ce5f2f4b2a30.png&w=196&h=196 By Amy B WangJanuary 28, 2024 at 3:13 p.m. ESTListen6 minShareComment on this storyCommentAdd to your saved storiesSave

Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.), who is facing blowback from within his party for working on a bipartisan border security package, defended the bill on Sunday, saying his Republican colleagues who have criticized the measure are misunderstanding it.

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Lankford has been the GOP's lead negotiator on the bipartisan deal, which would tie funding for Ukraine to border policy changes pushed by Republicans. Though senators have not yet released the text of the bill, President Biden has praised the general framework of the deal. But former president Donald Trump has opposed the package, which has prompted several Senate Republicans to say they would not support the measure.

On Sunday, Lankford said his colleagues had not had a chance yet to read the full text of the bill and said there were "internet rumors" floating around about the measure that were false.

"This bill focuses on getting us to zero illegal crossings a day. There's no amnesty. It increases the number of Border Patrol agents, increases asylum officers, it increases detention beds so we can quickly detain and then deport individuals," Lankford said on "Fox News Sunday."

"It focuses on additional deportation flights out. It changes our asylum process so that people get a fast asylum screening at a higher standard and then get returned back to their home country," Lankford added.

Lankford called out his colleagues for bowing to political pressure, noting that four months ago Republicans refused to grant funding for Ukraine, Israel and the southern border until there were policy changes.

"So we actually locked arms together and said we're not going to give you money for this. We want a change in law," Lankford said. "When we're finally going to the end, they're like, 'Oh, just kidding. I actually don't want a change in law because it's a presidential election year.' We all have an oath to the Constitution and we have a commitment to say we're going to do whatever we can to be able to secure the border."

Lankford, however, is facing intense criticism from within his own party over his efforts to get the bipartisan bill done. On Saturday, the Oklahoma GOP committee passed a resolution condemning Lankford for his work with Democrats on the border security bill and called on the senator "to cease and desist jeopardizing the security and liberty of the people of Oklahoma and of these United States."

The resolution accused Lankford of "playing fast and loose with Democrats on our border policy" and of "authorizing several thousand people to invade our borders before any action can be taken."

Trump, who is running for reelection and who decisively won the GOP's first two nominating contests this month, blasted the would-be bipartisan deal as a potential political "gift" to Democrats during an election year. On Saturday, Trump bragged about inserting himself into the debate and stymieing efforts to get the bill passed, even though he is not in office.

Democrats, including Biden's reelection campaign officials and top lawmakers, have accused Trump of acting against national security interests for political gain. Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), another key negotiator on the border bill, said on CNN's "State of the Union" on Sunday that the bill could be ready to be on the Senate floor this week.

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"I am hopeful that we will still have enough Republicans in the Senate who want to fix the problem at the border, rather than just do Donald Trump's bidding, but we will see over the next 24 to 48 hours whether that's true," Murphy said.

Biden on Friday said that the bill would grant him new emergency authority to "shut down" the border, referring to a provision that would kick in when unauthorized crossings surpass 5,000 over a five-day average. He vowed to use that new authority on the day he signed the bill into law.

Lankford noted that, in the last four months, there have only been seven days where there were fewer than 5,000 unauthorized border crossings a day, and that the bill was intended to close down the border so that "no one gets in" if there was a rush of crossings.

"This is not about letting 5,000 people in a day. This is the most misunderstood section of this proposal," Lankford said on Sunday on Fox. "This is not someone standing at the border with a little clicker saying, 'I'm going to let one more in. We're at 4,999' and then it has to stop. It is a shutdown of the border and everyone actually gets turned around."

The authority Biden was referencing would shut down most asylum screenings for migrants crossing illegally, according to two people familiar with the outlines of the deal who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss private deliberations. Migrants could still apply at ports of entry, where a set number of asylum claims would need to be granted, they said. Migrants would be expelled indefinitely until crossings dipped below 3,750 per day, which would end the expulsion authority period.

The bill being negotiated would also change the U.S. asylum process with the goal of reducing the average time for an asylum claim to be resolved from several years to 6 months, the people said. It also raises the standard for migrants to be able to make an asylum claim in the first place. Some Republicans' goal to dramatically curtail Biden's use of his humanitarian parole powers for certain categories of migrants is not in the final deal, they said.

On Sunday, Lankford said the measure will ensure that the only migrants who get a work permit are those who have gone through a "strenuous evaluation" and who are probably going to be able to end up with asylum and remain in the United States.

"That's a fraction of the people that go through the process. The vast majority of people that actually go through this process will be turned around and were deported," Lankford said.

Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.), who appeared on "Fox News Sunday" right after Lankford, defended the Oklahoma senator as smart, hard-working and knowledgeable — but also said Lankford was "on a suicide mission" regarding the border security deal and indicated he would not support the package.

"Now, James is doing the best he can to try to explain the bill that, unfortunately, I don't know why they don't share it with us. I mean, I'd rather be for something, but we don't get anything," Scott said. "Biden could [shut down the border] today. Why doesn't he do it today? I mean, he doesn't need any of this to secure the border."

Toluse Olorunnipa and Liz Goodwin contributed to this report.

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JBB
Professor Principal
1  seeder  JBB    4 weeks ago

MAGAs should get outside their bubble today...

 
 
 
Greg Jones
Professor Guide
1.1  Greg Jones  replied to  JBB @1    4 weeks ago

5000 a day!!!

That's about 4,995 too many. As many as possible need to be turned around, starting now, but Biden won't do it.  On top of that, Biden wants what amounts to universal amnesty.

Abbott and others are doing Bidens job for him. Their actions should be applauded and supportedl

 
 
 
JBB
Professor Principal
1.1.1  seeder  JBB  replied to  Greg Jones @1.1    4 weeks ago

Then you are willing to let the status quo continue. Thank You...

 
 
 
George
Sophomore Guide
1.1.2  George  replied to  JBB @1.1.1    4 weeks ago

That's is absolutely not what he said, If you have to lie you have already lost.

 
 
 
Greg Jones
Professor Guide
1.1.3  Greg Jones  replied to  JBB @1.1.1    4 weeks ago
"Then you are willing to let the status quo continue. Thank You..."

New legislation or "bill" or law will not change the status quo since Biden shows no indication of following it any more than he has followed existing law

You're welcome!

 
 
 
Right Down the Center
Junior Guide
1.1.4  Right Down the Center  replied to  Greg Jones @1.1.3    4 weeks ago

Funny how so many people are stuck on "Joe needs more money in order to address the crisis on the border" totally ignoring he could have done alot on day 1 of his presidency by doing nothing and leaving what the evil one had in place.

 
 
 
Ronin2
Professor Quiet
2  Ronin2    4 weeks ago

Leftists should demand Schumer take up the bill the Republican House passed that deals with border security and immigration- instead of "negotiating" a deal between Democrats and Establishment Republicans.

Leftists should also demand that Brandon enforce our border and immigration laws as written. He doesn't need new authority or money to do that.

Brandon and Democrats caused this crisis- they should receive nothing in return for "fixing it". Especially billions of more US tax payer money going to the Ukraine corruption sink hole. 

 
 
 
George
Sophomore Guide
3  George    4 weeks ago

For fucks sake, are democrats in the senate such American hating pieces of shit we have to bribe them with money for Ukraine to get them to pass a bill that helps Americans? Schumer is a worthless piece of crap.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.1  TᵢG  replied to  George @3    4 weeks ago

The article also points out that some Republican senators are responding to Trump's directive to NOT support the bill while Biden is PotUS.

Politicians are slimy.   If you focus on one party to the exclusion of the other, you will typically be wrong.

 
 
 
Greg Jones
Professor Guide
3.1.1  Greg Jones  replied to  TᵢG @3.1    4 weeks ago

People who support administrations like Biden's are also slimy and blindly partisan.

The Democrat party supports and aids and abets this ongoing migrant invasion, the Republicans want to stop it.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.1.2  TᵢG  replied to  Greg Jones @3.1.1    4 weeks ago
People who support administrations like Biden's are also slimy and blindly partisan.

I know you can conceive of nothing better, but implying that I support Biden (as in agree with everything he does) is demonstrable bullshit.   And your subsequent labeling of me as slimy further illustrates a feeble argument.

The Democrat party supports and aids and abets this ongoing migrant invasion, the Republicans want to stop it.

Apparently you have missed my point.   I have not argued that the Ds are without blame.   What I noted is that the Rs who are being influenced by Trump to NOT address the immigration problem now should be blamed too.

 
 
 
afrayedknot
Junior Quiet
3.1.3  afrayedknot  replied to  Greg Jones @3.1.1    4 weeks ago

“…the Republicans want to stop it.”

Certainly not the GOP leadership in the House and Senate. They cower in fear of losing their power…a moot point in acquiescing to such absolute absurdity. 

 
 
 
Right Down the Center
Junior Guide
4  Right Down the Center    4 weeks ago

Though senators have not yet released the text of the bill, President Biden has praised the general framework of the deal.

It will be interesting to see.  Since Joe has taken no action that he currently could in slowing the tide of illegals and Shumer has not taken up the existing house bill the cynical me has to wonder if the bill doesn't give him the ability to do nothing (like he is) yet claim a victory for border security.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
4.1  Texan1211  replied to  Right Down the Center @4    4 weeks ago
cynical me has to wonder if the bill doesn't give him the ability to do nothing (like he is) yet claim a victory for border security.

And had the red state governors not sent busloads of immigrants to blue sanctuaries, Biden would have been content to ignore the border like he has been doing.

if this was not an election year, Biden and the Democrats would still be ignoring the whole mess.

 
 
 
Right Down the Center
Junior Guide
4.1.1  Right Down the Center  replied to  Texan1211 @4.1    4 weeks ago
if this was not an election year, Biden and the Democrats would still be ignoring the whole mess.

That is my exact concern that Joe may only be happy if the bill allows him to continue to do nothing  and we will just have 4 more years of open border denial.  Or that the bill is so bad the Republicans have no choice but to reject it (hopefully without pressure from Trump-although I am sure that is how they will try to spin it) and blame the Republicans.  

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
4.1.2  Sean Treacy  replied to  Right Down the Center @4.1.1    4 weeks ago
hat is my exact concern that Joe may only be happy if the bill allows him to continue to do nothin

Whether the bill passes or not, Biden will put on a show of a "crack down" from August through November to make it appear he's doing something before the election and then go back to promoting open borders.  Once the election passes, he will simply cite "prosecutorial discretion" to justify not enforcing the laws, as he has since the day was elected whether this or any other bill passes. 

 
 

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