The Republican majority in the House of Representatives on Wednesday unveiled their recommendations for dealing with the child immigration crisis on the southern border, a list that begins with deploying the National Guard and contains legal changes to facilitate the process of deporting the minors.
The Republicans’ recommendations come a little more than a week before Congress’ August recess, while President Barack Obama’s request for $3.7 billion in emergency funds to handle the crisis remains stalled.
House Speaker John Boehner appointed a working group to discuss the matter, a group headed by Rep. Kay Granger (R-Texas), who on Wednesday made public its proposals.
The conservatives - who over the past few weeks have repeatedly reiterated that Obama’s proposal seems very costly to them and not very committed to strengthening border security - are asking for the National Guard to be deployed along the border as their very first recommendation, “which will free up the Border Patrol to focus on their primary mission,” Granger said in a statement.
In addition, another of the more controversial and central points in the discussion on the arrival of unaccompanied minors along the border has been the amendment to the 2008 law promulgated to protect children who are the victims of human traffickers.
The amendment aims for minors who arrive illegally from countries that do not border on the United States to be subjected to quicker legal procedures and be deported more rapidly.
The Republicans insist on the need to modify that law and establish a time limit of seven days for children coming from Guatemala, Honduras or El Salvador who are in the custody of the Department of Health and Human Services and who decline immediate repatriation to have a hearing before an immigration judge.
This proposal is the one encountering the most opposition among Democrats.
Although the number of unaccompanied minors arriving in the United States has been falling in recent weeks, there are already more than 57,000 children or teenagers who have crossed the U.S. southern border alone in the past 10 months after traveling all the way from Central America.