"Ted Cruz introduces legislation to keep immigrant families together after they cross the border" was first published by The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan media organization that informs Texans — and engages with them — about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues.
WASHINGTON - U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz announced emergency legislation Monday evening to keep immigrant families together after they cross the border into the United States.
His legislation follows comments Cruz made on Saturday that essentially called for more resources to adjudicate asylum claims. He also called for keeping immigrant kids with their parents as long as those adults are not associated with criminal activity.
“All Americans are rightly horrified by the images we are seeing on the news, children in tears pulled away from their mothers and fathers," Cruz wrote in a release. "This must stop. Now. We can end this crisis by passing the legislation I am introducing this week."
The provisions of the legislation, according to the news release, include:
- Doubling the number of federal immigration judges, from roughly 375 to 750.
- Authorizing new temporary shelters, with accommodations to keep families together.
- Mandating that illegal immigrant families be kept together, absent aggravated criminal conduct or threat of harm to children.
- Providing for expedited processing and review of asylum cases, so that — within 14 days — those who meet the legal standards will be granted asylum, and those who do not will be immediately returned to their home countries.
Cruz's Democratic rival in his fall re-election bid, U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke of El Paso, spent part of the weekend demonstrating near a "tent city" in Tornillo, outside of El Paso.