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Immigration and the 2020 Presidential Election by Idan Kashani

As the 2020 presidential election edges closer, the question of immigration is more decisive than ever. Since his inauguration in 2017, Donald Trump has proven to the American people and to the world that he does not care about human rights, especially those of immigrants coming to the United States of America. He has consistently disrespected and dehumanized the undocumented immigrant community, calling them rapists, drug dealers, and criminals. Trump fails to recognize the contributions all immigrants, documented and undocumented, make to the American economy and society every day. According to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, undocumented immigrants pay an estimated 7 billion dollars into the social security fund annually, money that they will never benefit from due to the administration’s discriminatory immigration policy that is harmful to the economy and society of the United States.

At the border, refugees from Central American countries fleeing gang violence, poverty, corruption, and threats to their lives are having their children stripped from them and are being held in inhuman conditions that have no place in a developed country. ICE has been given the power to mentally and physically torture refugees, and is not being held accountable for sexual crimes committed by its employees. From 2014 to 2018, a total of 4556 allegations were made by immigrant children put in concentration camps of sexual harassment by ICE agents and employees in the camps. President Trump has refused to take action against ICE over their gross abuses of authority.

Beyond the border, ICE has transformed from an agency responsible for tracing and capturing dangerous foreign individuals and harmful goods that entered the country to a secret police that uses fear, intimidation, violence, and profiling to oppress immigrant communities and tear families apart. ICE raids target neighborhoods based on racial and socioeconomic profiling, and as a result lower income neighborhoods with significant nonwhite populations routinely deal with ICE agents knocking on their doors demanding to be let in despite not having any form of warrant nor probable cause. Immigrants are also targeted at work, while shopping, and in their cars. The judicial system in the United States has always operated on the basis of innocent until proven guilty, but ICE regularly detains US citizens and legal residents on the basis of their race or occupation and forces them to prove that they are, in fact, in the United States legally. This goes against everything we, as Americans, stand for, and everything that the founders of the country fought for over 244 years ago when we declared our independence from British tyranny.

Through his actions against immigrants in the United States and his white supremacist rhetoric, incumbent President Donald Trump has clearly communicated to us his dislike for immigrants and his love of Neo-fascism. Unfortunately, the Democratic establishment sabotaged Senator Bernie Sanders’s 2020 presidential campaign in order to preserve their corruption and the interests of the American oligarchy. Bernie Sanders was championing a breakthrough immigration plan that would humanize immigrants in the USA and recognize our need for immigration in our country. His plan was the most progressive of all the democratic candidates and was our preferred immigration plan here at the Monarch Project. However, Joe Biden’s immigration plan, the full text of which is available at his website, includes a reversal of Trump’s restrictive asylum policies, provision of aid to those stuck at the border, the end of excessively long detention and investment in an efficient case management system, reversal of the public charge policy, protection of dreamers, and the termination of the Muslim Ban. In November, we must stand up and vote Donald Trump out of office to protect the immigrants in our communities and at the border. While we do not agree with Joe Biden on many matters, the consensus on immigration is a clear one.

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