by Kevin Mercado

Refugee Resettlement

U.S. Will Phase Out Program for Central American Child Refugees
September 27, 2017
The Trump administration will now be ending a program that allowed children fleeing violence in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras to apply for refugee status in the U.S. The administration will soon phase out the Central American Minors (CAM) program in the 2018 fiscal year, according to a report provided by Congress. The report also noted the refugee resettlement cap, the lowest in years.

The Wrong Time to Cut Back on Refugees
September 29, 2017
In this opinion piece from the New York Times, reporter Michael G. Mullen speaks about Trump recent travel ban and the fact that he capped the number of refugees admitted to the country at 45,000. Mullen argues that it is the wrong time to cut back on refugees because “the president is taking a recklessly narrow view of how best to put America first. Shutting out refugees would not only increase human suffering; it would also weaken the country and undermine its foreign policy.” He argues that by restricting resettlement in the country, it appears as though the U.S. is validating propaganda of the Islamic state and extremists groups, claiming that the U.S. is hostile towards Muslims.

Refugee Resettlement Agencies Wait For Official Word on Refugee Cap
October 2, 2017
Refugee resettlement agencies in Kentucky are waiting for the official word on how many refugees will be allowed to enter the country. “Maria Koerner with the Kentucky Office for Refugees said while the limit of 45,000 was expected, it’s still disheartening. She said a decline in the number of refugees allowed into the country has–and will continue to–negatively affect funding at refugee resettlement agencies around Kentucky.”

Military Spending

Trump Complains About Price Tag of Puerto Rico Recovery, Brags About Military Boondoggle
October 3, 2017
During a now infamous press conference in Puerto Rico, Trump “suggested the disaster on the island after Hurricane Maria was minimal compared to a ‘real catastrophe like Hurricane Katrina.’” Trump went on to say, “ hate to tell you, Puerto Rico, but you’ve thrown our budget a little out of whack.” Just minutes after, he began speaking on how happy he was to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on the F-35 – a warplane that has yet to take flight in a single American combat mission. “The plane is designed to strike targets from beyond their visible range.”

Dems Show Willingness To Accept Increase In Defense Spending
October 3, 2017
House Democrats are now starting to say that they are prepared to accept the Trump administration’s $54 billion increase in military spending. “Democrats responded to the GOP budget Monday, saying they will accept the proposal as long as the bill includes the same amount for non-defense spending.” The bill is expected to hit the House floor this week.

The Latest: Extra Troops in Afghanistan Will Cost $1B a Year
October 3, 2017
The nation’s top military officer recently said that the thousands of additional U.S. troops that Trump has ordered to Afghanistan will cost just over $1 billion a year. “Marine Corps Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, says the U.S. is spending $12.5 billion overall to wage America’s longest war.” Dunford and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis are testifying before congressional committees in the coming week. “About 3,500 more American forces are being sent to Afghanistan as part of Trump’s new strategy.”