MPI & Wilson Center Webinar
Immigration and the U.S.-Mexico Border during the Pandemic: A Conversation with Members of Congress
Rep. Veronica Escobar (D-TX), Member of the House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Immigration and Citizenship
Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX), Member of the House Homeland Security Committee and Ranking Member of its Oversight, Management, and Accountability Subcommittee
Jane Harman, Director, President, and CEO, Wilson Center
Andrew Selee, President, Migration Policy Institute
Duncan Wood, Director, Mexico Institute, Wilson Center
As the U.S. government has implemented a raft of measures to combat the spread of COVID-19, a significant number have been in the immigration arena, touching in particular on the U.S.-Mexico border. The Mexican and U.S. administrations agreed to halt nonessential travel across the border, slowing activity across a closely interconnected and vibrant regional economy. The Trump administration also has taken a number of unprecedented measures, drawing on powers given to the Surgeon General in 1944 to block the entry of foreign nationals deemed possible health risks. As a result, border officials have expelled more than 10,000 unauthorized migrants and asylum seekers through an expedited process and largely ended access to asylum during the crisis.
In a bipartisan discussion organized by the Wilson Center’s Mexico Institute and the Migration Policy Institute, two border-state members of Congress — Rep. Veronica Escobar of El Paso and Rep. Dan Crenshaw of suburban Houston — will discuss the response to the coronavirus outbreak, how it is affecting the border region, and what the future might hold.