Joy Casino Ап Икс Newsletter: Should Congress Pass the Secure the Border Act? - Open to Debate

Newsletter: Should Congress Pass the Secure the Border Act?

Border Debate


Jessica Vaughan

Director of Policy Studies at the Center

for Immigration Studies




Kristie De Peña

Senior Vice President for Policy and Director of Immigration Policy

at Niskanen Center



Here is what we have in store this week:

  • We dive into a proposed bill and whether it could effectively curb illegal immigration
  • A closer look at opinions of the government’s management of the U.S.-Mexico border
  • Back in the headlines: Has The New York Times lost its way?
  • Your Sunday reading list



Crowded planes of migrants landing at Martha’s Vineyard. Lines of people seeking shelter at New York hotels, as officials declare a state of emergency. Overrun Border Patrol processing centers on the U.S.-Mexico border. These are the images that come to mind as the U.S. grapples with its migrant crisis which has reached new heights, creating the need for an urgent solution. One which has already passed in the House is the proposed Secure the Border Act of 2023.

What is its current status? So far, it’s been introduced in the Senate. However, in the past few months, additional military and economic aid for the war in Ukraine has been tied to Republican senators’ demands that border policy and security be tied to it, placing Congress in an impasse until a compromise is reached. Without approval of the $110 billion package, time — and money — is running out fast. The White House has threatened to veto the act, but President Biden says he is willing to work with Republicans to do more on border security. This week, Ukrainian President Zelensky visited the President and other lawmakers, warning that without the aid, he can’t keep fighting Russia.

Why should I know about this bill? Immigration is a core part of America’s history and a source of pride. The Secure the Border Act has led to concerns about the humanitarian impact of stricter border controls and potentially high costs. On the other hand, policies such as the Act are seen as a necessary response to improve national security, and a better structure is needed to curb illegal immigration levels.

In time for International Migrant Day and with the nation’s full attention, we debate: Should Congress Pass the Secure the Border Act? Arguing for its passage is Jessica Vaughan, the Director of Policy Studies for the Center for Immigration Studies, who is an expert on immigration law enforcement and has testified to the House’s Committee on Homeland Security. Arguing against the Act is Kristie De Peña, the Senior Vice President for Policy and Director of Immigration at the Niskanen Center, who focuses on immigration and national security law and has formerly consulted with the U.S. State Department.

To learn more about the Act and on what it entails, you can listen to this debate now on NPR, your favorite podcast platform, and on YouTube. As always, let us know what you think.




Where Americans Agree: More Progress Needs to Be Made For Handling Asylum-Seekers at the U.S.-Mexico Border




Should Congress Pass the Secure the Border Act?

YES: Jessica Vaughan

“Congress should pass the Secure the Border Act of 2023 because it will enable us to regain control of the border and stop the massive influx of illegal migration that we’ve been experiencing in the last couple of years and give relief to the communities that have been affected by this.”


NO: Kristie De Peña

“If the goal of Congress is to secure the border and improve our asylum system, which I would argue are good goals, the Secure the Border Act accomplishes neither of them… [It] will only further the status quo of a deeply under-resourced and continually overwhelmed system that fails to reflect the interests and values of most Americans.”


Back in the Headlines: HasThe New York Times Lost Its Way?

This week, The Economist took a deep dive into the state of debate and open dialogue at The New York Times, revisiting the heart of our debate question: Has The New York Times Lost Its Way? Hear Yascha Mounk, Batya Ungar-Sargon, Frank Sesno, and Virginia Heffernan debate. Watch the debate now.





University presidents flunk the humanity test

Jennifer Rubin | December 9, 2023

The Washington Post

Watch Jennifer’s debate on whether we should blame elites for the Trump phenomenon



Why Inflation Hits Poor Americans Hardest

Parker Sheppard | December 8, 2023

Heritage Foundation

Watch Parker’s debate on whether Congress should abolish the debt ceiling



How Indigenous-led restoration can help meet COP28’s climate targets

Angela Kane and Megan Leslie | December 11, 2023

Vancouver Sun

Watch Angela’s debate on whether the United Nations is obsolete



We need to talk about the United States’ mental health crisis – and its larger causes

Robert Reich | December 11, 2023

The Guardian

Watch Robert’s debate on whether it’s time to redistribute the wealth

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