Refugee Resettlement Watch

Archive for May 15th, 2013

Human Rights Gang not happy with Senator Grassley

Posted by Ann Corcoran on May 15, 2013

Senator Grassley has submitted amendments to the Gang of Eight plus Grover bill (S.744) regarding the loosening of our already pretty loose asylum system (remember Boston way back last month before all the latest crises of the Obama Administration have taken everyone’s eyes from it).  Grassley wants to dump some proposed provisions in the bill that will give more asylum seekers more time and an easier process to apply.

Human Rights First and its gang at the Refugee Council USA (lobbying arm for refugee contractors) are ginning up opposition to Grassley.

See all amendments here.

Here is the latest from the “humanitarians:”

Last week members of the Senate Judiciary Committee filed potential amendments to the bipartisan immigration bill (S. 744) negotiated by the “Gang of 8” – Senators Michael Bennet, Richard Durbin, Jeff Flake, Lindsey Graham, John McCain, Robert Menendez, Marco Rubio and Charles Schumer.  Among the proposed amendments are two sponsored by Senator Grassley (Grassley 27 and Grassley 52) that would eliminate or substantially delay two targeted reforms to the U.S. asylum system included in the bipartisan bill:  section 3401 which would eliminate a filing deadline bar that prevents genuine refugees from receiving US asylum; and section 3404 which authorizes some asylum cases to be resolved through a full asylum office interview conducted by trained Department of Homeland Security –U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (DHS-USCIS) asylum officers.

Refugee Council USA, a coalition of faith based and other organizations (including Human Rights First) ,  sent a letter on the amendments to the Senate Judiciary Committee members specifically asking them to oppose Grassley 27 and Grassley 52 as well as other amendments that would impact refugees and asylum seekers.

Grassley wants to delay changing the asylum program until he has a full accounting of what went wrong with our asylum system in Boston.  Sounds reasonable to me.  We don’t need any more murdering welfare moochers like the Tsarnaev family.

One of Senator Grassley’s amendments seeks to delay the reforms outlined in the Gang of 8 bill until a year after the Director of National Intelligence submits to Congress reports, and sub-reports, on the government’s handling of the Boston Marathon bombing.   The Boston bombing was a tragedy, and the government should certainly take steps to address and prevent another attack.  There is no reason to use the Boston tragedy to derail or delay reforms to strengthen the asylum system.

I’ll add Grassley’s office to my list of Hill visits today.  I want them to strip out all references to refugees and asylum from the Gang’s bill until there are full hearings on the whole refugee program.  Maybe we have to go back and re-write the Refugee Resettlement Act of 1980.

Posted in Asylum seekers, Refugee Resettlement Program, The Opposition | Tagged: , , | Comments Off on Human Rights Gang not happy with Senator Grassley

 
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