Republicans Fight Harder Over Title 42

Photo by Harold Mendoza on Unsplash

They aren’t backing down even slightly.

If Senate hopes to revive a stalled coronavirus relief package, it will have to vote on retaining the Trump-era border policy, according to Senate Republicans.

The GOP’s hard-line follows a ruling by a federal judge on Monday which temporarily blocked the Biden administration from revoking Title 42.

The public health policy enabled migrants to be expelled at the border and prevented them from seeking asylum.

Despite the temporary block, GOP senators say they won’t stop pursuing an amendment vote on Title 42, which has stalled $10 billion in COVID relief aid.

Republican Senator James Lankford of Oklahoma, who is heading the bipartisan proposal to uphold Title 42, emphasized the need to address the policy.

“It’s still this bizarre policy that they’re trying to put in place where COVID is toxic in some places and not in others.”

The second-highest-ranking Senate Republican, Senator John Thune of South Dakota, noted that the ruling hadn’t shifted the GOP’s thinking, as there is “still a need for Congress to intervene.”

Earlier this month, Senate Republicans prevented Senate from passing $10 billion in domestic coronavirus relief because Democrats would not allow a vote on an amendment to keep Title 42.

The amendment, which has received the backing of five Democratic Senators, prohibits the administration from lifting Title 42 while a broader public health emergency remains in effect. This support means that if Republicans only need a simple majority to get the amendment approved, they have enough support.

It’s also this backing that makes them more likely to pursue the amendment, as Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said on Tuesday: “We will need to have a Title 42 vote at some point here and in all likelihood on the COVID package.”