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The Forces Pulling At Both Sides As Democrats Debate How To Address Worsening Conditions For Migrant Children Held At Southern Border

Protestors Rally Against Customs And Border Patrol Funding In U.S. Senate
Protestors Rally Against Customs And Border Patrol Funding In U.S. Senate
Tom Brenner/Getty Images

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With a vote planned for today on a funding bill that would send $4.5 billion in humanitarian aid to the southwestern U.S. border with Mexico, and some within their ranks dissenting over how the funding might be used if the package were to be approved, some House Democrats find themselves at odds with one another over whether the funding package is the best way to solve the problem.

Members of both the Congressional Progressive and Hispanic Caucuses met with Assistant Speaker Ben Ray Luján (D-N.M.) yesterday to share their concerns that the administration might use the funds to detain more children. New York Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, along with three other progressive Democrats, released a statement over the weekend saying they would not support the legislation. Assuming the entire 435 member House shows up for the vote, the Washington Post reports 235 House Democrats will only be able to afford 17 people breaking rank in order to get the bill passed. Republicans, meanwhile, have said they won’t support the House bill but could get behind a bipartisan bill that came out of a Senate committee last week.

The disagreement has gained even more attention following hundreds of migrant children being transferred out of a Border Patrol station in Clint, Texas where it was reported that the kids were living in squalid conditions without soap, clean clothes, or toothbrushes.

With guest host Libby Denkmann


Cristina Marcos, congressional reporter for The Hill; she tweets @cimarcos

Erik Wasson, congressional reporter at Bloomberg News; he tweets @elwasson