Democrat President Joe Biden’s administration pulled out of massive settlement talks this week for immigrants who illegally entered the U.S. under the previous administration and were separated from their families.
“Amid political outcry from Republican lawmakers, after the settlement talks were reported, the government told outside negotiators the number would need to be lowered,” The Wall Street Journal reported. “This week, the lawyers say, the Justice Department pulled out of negotiations entirely.”
The Wall Street Journal reported in late October that the Biden administration was considering payments as high as $450,000 to every illegal alien who was separated from their family, which “could amount to close to $1 million a family, though the final numbers could shift.”
The report from October said that many families would likely get smaller payouts depending on their circumstances and that the total payout could be more than $1 billion. The move comes as the Biden administration works to resolve nearly a thousand lawsuits that have so far been filed by families.
Justice Department spokeswoman Dena Iverson said that the Biden administration still remained “committed to engaging with the plaintiffs and to bringing justice to the victims.”
Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s Immigrants’ Rights Project, responded to the news by saying, “We are hardly naive that politics sometimes plays a role in DOJ decisions but it is shameful that it happened when the lives of little children are at stake.”
“History will not look kindly on the Biden administration’s decision not to stand up for these small children,” he added.
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