Lankford, Sinema drop bipartisan bill requesting Biden admin delay ending of Title 42 enforcement

Bill has in total signatures from five Democrat, six Republican senators

Updated: April 7, 2022 - 9:57am

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Eleven senators will on Thursday introduce a bipartisan bill requesting the Biden administration delay the end to enforcing the federal law known as Title 42 as a public health policy to keep foreigners out of the U.S. during the pandemic. 

The bill was drafted by Sens. Kyrsten Sinema, an Arizona Democrat, and James Lankford, an Oklahoma Republican, and in total has the signatures of five Democrat and six Republican senators. 

The senators are concerned that deactivating the 1940s law – activated by the Trump administration at the start of the pandemic to remove asylum seekers, to try to prevent the virus from spreading – without a comprehensive plan will result in a massive immigrant surge at the Mexico border. 

The bill, reported first by Axios, follows Senate wrangling earlier this week in which Republican members said they would not agree to a bipartisan measure to spend an additional $10 billion on COVID-19 health-and-safety measures unless a amendment similar to the Sinema-Lankford bill was included.

Axios reports the senators plan to introduce the measure as a bill so lawmakers can see the text of what they're proposing.

However, they don’t plan to hold a standalone vote on the legislation and instead plan to include it as part of a larger amendment they will attach to the Senate's $10 billion COVID funding bill, Lankford told Axios

The Democratic co-sponsors are Sens. Mark Kelly, of Arizona; Maggie Hassan, of New Hampshire; Joe Manchin, of West Virginia; and Jon Tester, of Montana.

The Republican co-sponsors are Senate Minority Whip John Thune, of South Dakota, and Sens. John Cornyn, of Texas; Thom Tillis of North Carolina; Shelley Moore Capito, of West Virginia; and Rob Portman of Ohio.

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