News Releases

The Protect American Values Act would prohibit the government from using federal funds to carry out latest Trump Administration attack on immigrant families

Senator Murray: “President Trump’s proposed public charge rule is further proof that the goal of his immigration agenda is not to fix our broken system, but to inflict needless cruelty upon immigrants in our communities”

(Washington, D.C.) – U.S. Senators Patty Murray (D-WA), Mazie K. Hirono (D-HI), and 25 of their Senate Democratic colleagues introduced the Protect American Values Act, legislation that would prohibit the Trump Administration from using federal funding to implement its so-called public charge rule. Scheduled to go into effect on October 15, 2019, the proposed public charge rule aims to prevent immigrants from coming to or staying in the United States based on factors such as their wealth, family size, age, skills, level of education, or ability to speak English.

“President Trump’s proposed public charge rule is further proof that the goal of his immigration agenda is not to fix our broken system, but to inflict needless cruelty upon immigrants in our communities,” Senator Murray said. “I’m proud to join Senator Hirono and my Democratic colleagues in introducing legislation to oppose this callous move, and I will continue fighting to protect families in Washington state and across the country against this short-sighted, heartless rule.”

Senator Murray has long opposed President Trump’s efforts to change the public charge rule, citing anecdotes from individuals and families in Washington state who have already been adversely affected by the Trump Administration’s proposed policy shift, and demanded the Department of Homeland Security withdraw the proposed regulation during U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ public comment period.  Additionally, Senator Murray previously urged then-Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen to rescind the Department’s proposed rule expanding the definition of “public charge,” which would require immigration officers to consider an individual’s use of public benefits when applying for travel to the U.S. or adjustment of immigration status—a departure from decades of immigration policy that could deter lawful immigrants and their citizen family members from using public benefits they are otherwise eligible to receive.

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