February 7, 2024

CONTACT: Emily Hagan-Howe, Communications Strategist, [email protected]

Montpelier, Vt. — The U.S. Senate today held a vote on a deal that would eviscerate protections for people seeking asylum and do nothing to fix our immigration system. Though the supplemental funding package failed to gather the necessary votes to advance, Senator Peter Welch voted in favor of the bill, while Senator Bernie Sanders voted against it.

James Lyall, Executive Director of ACLU Vermont had the following reaction:

“The extreme anti-immigrant policies laid out in this framework were never meant to be real solutions, and would have only caused needless suffering and chaos at the border and in communities nationwide. While we are disappointed to see some Senators voting in favor of this bill, we look forward to working together to pass humane and effective reforms that treat immigrants with dignity and respect.

“We must recognize that regional migration is a humanitarian issue that can and should be met with humane solutions. That means funding our immigration processing systems so they can start functioning properly. That means providing far more support to cities receiving newly arrived immigrants. It means protecting Dreamers and other longtime residents who are undocumented. And it means, finally—after decades of inaction and opposition—passing comprehensive immigration reform.

“Today’s failed vote presents yet another opportunity for our elected leaders to get immigration reform right, to uphold our nation’s moral commitments to those seeking safety.”