House Democrats are still trying to include protections and work permits for immigrants in Congress’s $1.75 trillion spending package, even though it’s likely to be rejected by the Senate parliamentarian, who previously objected to the inclusion of a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, along with 11 other Republican senators, have claimed that the Biden administration’s proposal to pay settlements to families (around $450,000 per person, with some variation depending on families’ circumstances) affected by the 2018 family separation policy is tantamount to rewarding them for illegal immigration.
However, taking the cases to trial would likely be more expensive, as the government would likely be called on by the families broken up by the policy to pay for years of therapy for every child who had to spend time living with the anxiety and stress from being forcibly separated from their parents.
Learn more about how separations affect children, including U.S. citizen children, in our Beyond the Border Report.
While the Biden administration had originally planned to shelve the Trump administration’s use of Title 42, which quickly expelled migrant families from the United States during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, the administration has instead pivoted to defending the use of the policy.