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Bass, Tri-Caucus Members Oppose Implementation of Public Charge Rule

January 28, 2020
Press Release
Washington, D.C. – Yesterday, the Supreme Court voted 5-4 to allow the Trump Administration’s Public Charge rule to go into effect while the merits of the case continue to be argued in lower courts.

Last week, members of the Congressional Tri-Caucus – composed of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC), Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC), and Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) – filed amicus briefs in the Second, Fourth, and Ninth circuit courts opposing the Trump Administration’s public charge rule. The Tri-Caucus filed the same brief in multiple cases at the district court level last year.

The amicus brief supports litigation against the public charge rule by arguing that the disparate impact of the rule on communities of color violates both the Equal Protection Clause and Administrative Procedure Act.

The amicus brief was led by Tri-Caucus leaders including CAPAC Chair Judy Chu, CHC Whip Adriano Espaillat, CBC Immigration Task Force Chair Yvette D. Clarke, CHC Chair Joaquin Castro, CBC Chair Karen Bass, CAPAC Immigration Task Force Chair Pramila Jayapal, and CAPAC Healthcare Task Force Chair Barbara Lee.

The members released the following joint-statement on behalf of the Congressional Tri-Caucus:

“We are extremely dismayed by the Supreme Court’s decision to allow the Trump Administration’s harmful public charge rule to go in effect. This decision needlessly jeopardizes the wellbeing of immigrant families and will drastically alter our immigration system for the worse.

Our immigration system has long been built on the principle that immigrants from all walks of life make our country better.  And despite the false claims made to justify this public charge rule, the data shows that immigrants help grow the economy and use fewer government resources than native-born individuals. Regardless, the Trump Administration has spent the past three years creating an immigration system that is cruelly stacked against immigrants of color and the public charge rule is no exception.

In a clear violation of Congressional intent, the rule stretches the term “public charge” in the service of blatant discrimination against immigrants of color. 

This cruelty must end, and the Tri-Caucus will continue to push back against this rule as the Trump Administration moves forward with implementation.”

The full brief can be viewed here.