On March 6, 2017 the President signed a revised Executive Order prohibiting all immigration from six Muslim-majority countries in the Middle East for at least 90 days and suspending all refugee admissions for 120 days. The Order also reduces the number of refugees that may be admitted to the United States from 110,000 per year to 50,000. Rep. Eshoo believes this policy is a religious ban that is antithetical to the values of our country and harms our national security.
On June 26, 2017, the Supreme Court allowed the Executive Order to go into effect but ruled that it could only apply to those without a close relationship to a person or organization in the U.S. The full impact of this decision is unclear because lower courts will have to decide what constitutes a close relationship. The Court will hear full arguments on the case in October of this year.
Rep. Eshoo has joined over 150 colleagues in introducing legislation, H.R. 1503, the Statue of Liberty Values (SOLVE) Act 2.0, to overturn this Executive Order. The refugees the President has shut our doors to are not terrorists—they are the victims of terrorism and they have already been through extreme vetting. I will continue to protect our national security, stand up for refugees, and vigorously oppose the Administration’s shameful ban.
On January 25th the President signed an Executive Order intended to initiate construction of a wall on the Mexican border. While the President claims to have the legal authority to immediately build a wall, the funding must be provided by Congress. Independent research firms have estimated that building a wall will cost anywhere between $15 and $25 billion. Although the President has promised that Mexico will pay for the wall, he has asked Congress to fund its construction and Speaker Paul Ryan has pledged to do so.
Rep. Eshoo has consistently voted for measures to secure our borders, but building a 2,000-mile wall along the entire southern border is the highest-cost and least effective way to achieve this goal. Our border is already protected by 650 miles of fencing and over 21,000 Border Patrol agents who use a combination of physical barriers, cameras, drone surveillance, and other measures to secure the border. These efforts are working. According to the Pew Hispanic Research Center, illegal crossings at the Mexican border are at a 40-year low and more Mexicans have left the U.S. since 2009 than have entered.
Rep. Eshoo is a cosponsor of H.R. 920, the Protecting Our Border Communities Act of 2017, which overturns the President’s Executive Order and prevents federal funding from being used on the President’s border wall. Rep. Eshoo will continue to oppose any efforts in Congress to fund the President’s misguided border wall proposal.
The President has also directed his Administration to increase enforcement of immigration laws in the interior of the country, and news reports have indicated that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has significantly stepped up its deportation efforts. The Administration has pledged that it is only targeting dangerous criminals for deportation, but news stories from around the country indicate that nonviolent, non-criminal immigrants have been included in roundups and subjected to deportation proceedings. Rep. Eshoo is a cosponsor of H.R. 921, the Community Trust Act of 2017, which overturns the President’s Executive Order that seeks to ramp up deportations and immigration enforcement.
Constituents should be aware that they can call Rep. Eshoo’s Palo Alto office at (650) 323-2984 if you require assistance with a specific immigration case or proceeding.