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IRAP Urges a “No” Vote on Deeply Harmful Senate Border Legislation


May 23, 2024



Democratic Leadership Pushing Immigration Debate in Wrong Direction

(New York, NY) – Today, the U.S. Senate is expected to vote on bill S. 4361, an immigration bill that would permanently gut asylum protections in the United States. After previously stalling, the bill was reintroduced by Senator Murphy and brought to a vote by Senator Schumer, both Democrats. 

The following is a statement from Sunil Varghese, Policy Director at the International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP):

“IRAP urges a ‘no’ vote on this deeply harmful and short-sighted legislation. This bill is filled with policy proposals that would violate the International Refugee Convention, expel asylum-seekers without any individual determination, and finance Trump’s border wall and immigration detention at unprecedented levels. 

The reintroduction of this bill is driven by reprehensible and misguided political calculations. The only thing it achieves is to move the goalposts in the wrong direction; Democratic leadership is setting a dangerous precedent by initially conceding and now embracing extremist immigration policies.

At a time when politicians like former president Trump are threatening mass deportations and other authoritarian crackdowns on immigration, it is imperative for policymakers to provide meaningful alternatives to this hateful rhetoric rather than adopt it as their own. Americans want legal pathways and sustainable, humane solutions to the border – not more cruelty. While the bill is likely to fail, today’s vote will become the perilous starting point for future legislative debates.

IRAP urges officials both on Capitol Hill and in the White House to rethink their strategy and stop sacrificing the rights and dignity of immigrants for cheap political points. Policy experts and advocates have issued extensive, feasible recommendations to the administration: IRAP implores you to consider them.”

Additional Resources

  • Read IRAP’s previous statement opposing the bill: HERE
  • Read the #WelcomeWithDignity campaign’s previous statement opposing the bill: HERE
  • Read NIJC’s most recent analysis of the bill: HERE
  • View alternative policy solutions:  #WelcomeWithDignity and NIJC

The International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP) is a global legal aid and advocacy organization working to create a world where refugees and all people seeking safety are empowered to claim their right to freedom of movement and a path to lasting refuge. Everyone should have a safe place to live and a safe way to get there.