U.S. News


Obama Asks For $2 Billion To Handle Wave Of Child Immigrants

The president said Sunday he'd ask Congress for $2 billion to stop the flow of children across the U.S. border from Mexico and Central America.
Posted at 5:41 PM, Jun 29, 2014

In response to what he calls a "humanitarian crisis," President Obama will ask Congress for $2 billion to halt the flow of child immigrants streaming through America's southern border.

Since 2011, the number of children captured at the U.S. border has surged. In 2014, an estimated 70,000 children from Mexico and Central America were caught at the border. (Via Vox)

"​We're talking about large numbers of children without their parents who have arrived at our border hungry, thirsty, exhausted, scared and vulnerable."

The federal government has been criticized for its inability to handle the immigrants. Voice of America reports that "hundreds of undocumented immigrant children are being held in detention centers." 

"All of them detained in Texas but because immigration offices can't handle these cases they're being shipped here to Phoenix." (Via KSAZ)

The crisis has created a political dilemma for the president. Deporting the children en masse is legally dicey and could alienate Hispanic voters. 

"He's probably looking at very low and unenthusiastic rates of Latino voting in 2014 if he does not act."

But keeping them here will worsen the severe overcrowding of detained immigrants on the border. (Via The Washington Post)

Obama responded with an announcement Sunday that he would seek $2 billion in emergency funding from Congress. 

The New York Times reports that the money would be used to expand enforcement and humanitarian aid. 

"President Obama is going to ask Congress for more than $2 billion to deal with the uptick in unaccompanied minors coming over."

The President also warned parents to stop sending their kids north. 

"​Do not send your children to the borders. If they do make it, they'll get sent back. More importantly, they may not make it."

The funding is, of course, contingent on Congress's approval. A spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner said his office would have no comment until the proposal has been reviewed. (Via The White House)