That criticism extended this week to governor races in two southwestern swing states, Arizona and Nevada. Katie Hobbs, Arizona’s secretary of state and frontrunner for the Democratic nomination for governor, urged Biden to reverse his “hasty decision” and said that lifting Title 42 “without a clear plan to secure our border is a would be a disaster.”
Republicans, meanwhile, are plunging into the issue.
“Kelly has voted to lift the restrictions, which will set off a huge new border wave,” a narrator says in the ad. “Tell Senator Kelly: Stop voting with Biden and against Arizona.”
Sarah Guggenheimer, spokeswoman for the Kelly campaign, responded by saying that the senator has “provided more resources for border security, introduced bipartisan legislation to address the crisis, and opposed both the Biden administration and his own party.” to ensure a safe, humane and orderly process.” the border.”
Biden Administration at Defense
Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas told CNN this week that his department has “plans” to deal with the projected increase. But he wouldn’t elaborate.
“I think we should be very aware that we are dealing with enemies, and those enemies are the cartels and the smugglers, and I will not pass them on our plans. We will proceed with our execution, carefully, methodically, by anticipating on different scenarios,” he said.
Vulnerable Democratic lawmakers plan to use a House Judiciary Committee hearing with Mayorkas next week to distance themselves from the Biden administration’s decision, congressional officials say. They plan to grill the secretary, whose answers could provide a window into how the White House will defend its position.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said on Wednesday that the administration “planned and prepared” to roll back Title 42 on May 23, but remains open to talks with lawmakers about immigration reform.
The Democratic division over Title 42 places candidates in swing states and vulnerable incumbents, not only against Biden’s White House, but also against more progressive Democrats and immigration advocates.
Michigan Sen. Gary Peters, chair of the Senate Democrats’ campaign arm, said this week that the Biden administration may have to delay rolling back Title 42 until a clearer plan is in place to reduce the flow of migrants on the southern border.
The chairman of the Senate Homeland Security Committee said he understands why his colleagues running for reelection may be willing to speak out against Biden.
“I think they are right to ask questions. This is a very serious matter,” said Peters, who is not up for re-election this year. “The senators must take a position that they believe is best for their state.”
Criticism of the midterm card
Meanwhile, Democratic opposition to the Biden administration’s decision has mounted on the map of competitive Senate races in the November midterm elections.
“I think that needs some more thought. And I think we’re not quite there yet, honestly,” Fetterman said in an interview.
US Representative Conor Lamb, another Pennsylvania Senate candidate, told CNN he is a “skeptic” of the planned rollback.
“I will certainly listen to any argument the government wants to make,” Lamb said. “But you know, the pandemic isn’t over yet. That’s why Title 42 was put in place to try to help control what was happening down there in light of the pandemic and how things can spread and especially with these different variants.”
In Wisconsin, Democrats hoping to oust Republican Senator Ron Johnson this fall criticized Biden over title 42.
Lt. gov. Mandela Barnes, state treasurer Sarah Godlewski and Milwaukee Bucks executive Alex Lasry have all called on the government to propose a plan to keep both asylum seekers and U.S. residents safe before lifting the public health authority.
Democratic Senate candidates in red-leaning states have also spoken out.
“Ending this policy prematurely without a way forward will not help keep Americans safe, support our Border Patrol agents, protect asylum seekers or bring about the comprehensive solution our immigration system needs,” Ryan said. .
And retired Marine Lucas Kunce, a top Missouri open seat candidate, said, “Revoking Title 42 without a real plan is not a policy — it’s political.”
CNN’s Lauren Fox, Priscilla Alvarez, Manu Raju, Paradise Afshar, Andy Rose and Kate Sullivan contributed to this report.