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Obama seeks money, fast hearings to curb young migrant surge

By Steve Holland and Richard Cowen



(Reuters) - The U.S. administration sought on Tuesday to halt a cross-border surge of unaccompanied children from Central America, asking Congress for $3.7 billion in emergency spending and putting in place plans to quicken the youngsters' deportation hearings.

It was President Barack Obama's most substantive effort to gain control of a humanitarian crisis along the Texas border with Mexico and fend off Republican Party critics demanding a tougher response.

Immigrant Children Focus Of Obama's $3.7 Billion Request

One of those critics, Texas Governor Rick Perry, was due to meet Obama in Dallas on Wednesday during a roundtable Obama has scheduled on the topic with faith leaders and local officials, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said. Whether the two meet privately one-on-one was yet to be determined, Earnest told reporters. On Sunday Perry accused the administration of moving too slowly and called for National Guard troops to be sent to the border.

Without government action, the administration projects more than 150,000 unaccompanied children under the age of 18 next year could be fleeing the rampant poverty and domestic- and gang-related violence in Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala. More than 52,000 unaccompanied minors from the three countries have been caught trying to sneak over the border since October, double the number from the same period the year before.

The proposed actions will test Obama's ability to negotiate effectively with Republican lawmakers who have blocked much of his agenda ahead of a November election when they hope to capture the U.S. Senate from Obama's Democratic Party.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Democrat, said he thought the Senate could pass the emergency funding bill this month, before the start of a long summer recess. But House and Senate Republican leaders could insist on offsetting any new funds with cuts in other budget items.

Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell would only say that Obama's request needed a close look to "see if it's an appropriate response to the crisis." The White House said the largest portion of the requested funding, $1.8 billion, would pay to care for the children while in U.S. custody. Other funds would go to beefing up border enforcement, hiring more immigration judges and paying for programs to discourage deported children from again trying to slip into the United States illegally.

CHILDREN FIRST

Separately, a Justice Department official told Reuters the United States plans to give priority to child migrants over adults in deportation hearings. The new policy, to be announced on Wednesday, means immigration courts will now hear first from newly arrived children, while adult immigrants not in detention, including those who are seeking asylum, will have to wait longer, the official said.

Central America, a key transshipment point for drug smuggling between South America and the United States, has a long history of gang violence and the problem has mushroomed in recent years owing to turf wars fought by ruthless Mexican drug cartels. Honduras has the world's highest murder rate, according to a report released by the United Nations in April.

Besides seeking the additional funding, Obama has said he wants more tools to speed the children's deportation. He has yet to submit a formal request for legislation expanding the Department of Homeland Security's ability to expel the children while circumventing lengthy immigration court procedures.

In vowing to swiftly return the children to their home countries, Obama risks the wrath of Hispanic-American allies who look to him to act on his own to loosen, not strengthen, immigration rules.

Seeking to make the request more politically acceptable to lawmakers, the White House added $615 million in urgently needed money to fight summer wildfires raging in western states. This brought the total funding request to $4.315 billion.

Join the discussion

1000|Char. 1000  Char.
obama.you.lie July 09 2014 at 7:33 AM

What an incredible mess.
All of which was brought upon America by Barack Hussein Obama.
This 3.7 billion request is
NOT to 'send back these illegals'.
It is only to maintain them here..!
Obama still refuses ANY increased border patrol security funding.!
Why?
Because Barack Hussein Obama WANTS this invasion of our country to continue.!
He is building a
'immigrant nation'
of future DEMOCRAT voters.!
Obama is placing these
'imported Democrat supporters'
throughout the United States to create a permanent nation of
Liberal control of our country.
How clever - right
(or should I say left)
Obama's
Democrat Socialist Liberal Nation
is young and growing at a rate of tens of thousands each day..!
Welcome to Obama's America...

Flag Reply +99 rate up
15 replies
fishhead80 July 09 2014 at 7:25 AM

Obama caused this & other things, purposely to destroy America from within.
Show the world that true Americans have "ZERO" confidence in "LIAR" Obama, & must be impeached or charged with crimes against America.

Vote below this post "Thumbs Up"

Flag Reply +98 rate up
8 replies
buckeye3118 July 09 2014 at 8:31 AM

PopStar MESSiah is so concerned that, instead of visiting the border, he's going to TWO political fundraisers. He's following the Cloward and Piven script of doing what he can to collapse the system and cause the (manufactured) crisis that will allow him to become Emperor PopStar MESSiah.

Flag Reply +64 rate up
3 replies
coopdabomb July 09 2014 at 7:20 AM

Go down there and see for yourself and talk to the people who have to deal with your crap not a roundtable meeting.
No money for you asswipe, do your job.

Flag Reply +62 rate up
2 replies
blusasha coopdabomb July 09 2014 at 10:32 AM

When Liebrals like Buck - have nothing of substance to express they resort to personal attacks.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
mouse coopdabomb July 09 2014 at 11:06 AM

Hey there 'Bucky' Shouldn't you be on HP spewing your ignorant hatred? That is what that site is for. You people mesmericed by the orator of oracles. There is Nothing else in that Presidential suit or oval office!

Flag Reply +1 rate up
lsavi105 July 09 2014 at 7:11 AM

Worry about children in this country first, Send them back asap and t]
let mexico deal with their own problems, we have enough of our own. I am tired of of busting my back to support the out of control politicians running this country. Why don't we just all get on line for a free hand out, and run this country right into the ground.

Flag Reply +57 rate up
6 replies
Leroy Gd July 09 2014 at 8:38 AM

obama is overwhelming the system. Gee i wonder where he got that idea from?

Flag Reply +55 rate up
1 reply
lawless.obama.government Leroy Gd July 09 2014 at 9:06 AM

Obama's buddy
Saul David Alinsky
wrote a book on it...

Flag Reply +9 rate up
susanlenard July 09 2014 at 7:23 AM

Heck no do NOT give him money, he will not use it to stop this nonsense. Buy fuel for one plane, send their young butts home to their parents, and use the rest to erect a very tall fence!

Flag Reply +48 rate up
3 replies
ladmer July 09 2014 at 8:38 AM

America's latest Trojan Horse!

Flag Reply +44 rate up
2 replies
Hitechceo ladmer July 09 2014 at 10:28 AM

Without the horse!

Flag Reply 0 rate up
Aviation Finance ladmer July 09 2014 at 1:22 PM

With Dictator Obama at the reigns.....

Flag Reply 0 rate up
b4score July 09 2014 at 6:51 AM

Just what the hell is with you A/H? No hearings. They are here illegally. Do you job. Send them back you A/H and you and your family can go with them. You say congress is not doing their job. You are always blaiming someone else. Well, A/H you are not doing your job. Send them back now.

Flag Reply +20 rate up
1 reply
sanford5636 b4score July 09 2014 at 6:59 AM

Send them back,how about you do you your job no one comes in illegal shoot to kill tresspassers.Future crimnals is all they are take care of citizens.

Flag Reply +2 rate up
ernie July 09 2014 at 7:23 AM

Let's see.....2 Billion of that is to go for food, shelter, and medical aid for the children. My math says that's 38,461.54 for each and every child. Wouldn't YOU, a Legal American, like to have 38,461.54 for each of your kids?

Flag Reply +19 rate up
1 reply
doketx ernie July 09 2014 at 9:00 AM

You can't combat libtards with logic.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
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