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Sens. Cruz, Tuberville Introduce Bill to Prohibit Illegal Migrants from Getting ‘Free Pass’ into U.S.

The bill prohibits the release of illegal immigrants without first providing Notice to Appear in court

March 25, 2021

  |  

202-228-7561

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.), Mike Lee (R-Utah), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), and John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) today introduced legislation that would require the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to issue a Notice to Appear (NTA) in court prior to releasing any immigrant who illegally entered into the United States.

Upon introduction of this bill, Sen. Cruz said:

"There is an absolute humanitarian, national security, and public health crisis unfolding at our border, worsened by the current administration's irresponsible political decision to return to ‘catch and release,' a policy that has allowed hundreds of illegal aliens to be released in communities across Texas -- with no expectation for them to return for a court date. I am proud to join Senator Tuberville on this bill to ensure we defend the rule of law and hold those who break it accountable."

Sen. Tuberville added:

"Our facilities at the border are bursting at the seams, and because we've simply run out of space, we're releasing illegal migrants into our country with no real accountability, or date to appear in court. At best, it hurts those who come to this country actually looking to plead their asylum case. At worst, it's giving free rein into our country for breaking the law.

"This bill would prohibit migrants who came into the country illegally from being released into communities without a notice to appear in immigration court. The Biden Administration says they want ‘humane' and ‘compassionate' improvements to our immigration system - releasing someone without an NTA is neither. President Biden dismantled the successful policies President Trump put in place, but this bill will help restore integrity in our immigration system."

BACKGROUND

Due to the surge of illegal immigrants at the southwest border and overcrowding at detention facilities, U.S. Customs and Border Protection has begun to release these immigrants, who have illegally entered the country to claim asylum, without issuing a Notice to Appear (NTA) in immigration court for a hearing. An NTA provides illegal immigrants with a date and time certain to appear before an immigration judge and plead their case for asylum.

Releasing illegal immigrants from detention without an NTA runs counter to the spirit and letter of the law and erodes the integrity of our immigration system. By not providing an NTA, the U.S. government loses control over who is being released into the U.S. and deprives illegal immigrants of the opportunity to make legitimate asylum claims before an immigration judge.

The bill would require the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to issue an NTA for removal proceedings to any immigrant who has illegally entered the country prior to releasing them the into the U.S. or granting parole. The bill further stipulates that the illegal immigrant's parole, deferred action, or any other immigration status and associated employment authorization will be terminated if they fail to appear for the hearing.

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