February 17, 2023

Cassidy, Grassley, Colleagues Reintroduce Bill to Stop Biden Administration Abuse of Immigration Parole

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), and seven Senate colleagues reintroduced the Immigration Parole Reform Act of 2023 to restore integrity to the immigration parole system after decades of misuse by the executive branch. The bill would ensure the Biden administration complies with the original, long-standing Congressional intent for the immigration parole authority.

“Americans want President Biden to address the border crisis, not cover it up by granting blanket parole to those crossing the border illegally,” said Dr. Cassidy. “The administration is abusing our parole laws to do this, and our bill would stop them.”

“The executive branch’s abuse of immigration parole is unacceptable and totally out of line with congressional intent. I’m proud to lead the fight to curb the abuse of immigration parole and restore order to our immigration system,” said Senator Grassley.  

Immigration parole, first established in 1952, allows the executive branch to temporarily grant individuals entry into the United States on a case-by-case basis for urgent humanitarian reasons or significant public benefit. However, several presidential administrations, particularly those of Presidents Obama and Biden, have abused this authority to admit entire categories of individuals in circumvention of Congressionally-established pathways to allow foreign nationals to enter the United States. Some of these parole programs were created even after Congress repeatedly rejected or failed to consider and enact legislative proposals that would have created an immigration pathway for the group of people covered by the programs. 

The bill would clarify that parole may not be granted according to criteria that describe entire categories of people, and very clearly define what qualifies as an “urgent humanitarian reason” or “significant public benefit.” It would also provide clarity on the timing and extension of immigration parole, among other reforms. 

Cassidy and Grassley were joined by U.S. Senators Tom Cotton (R-AR), J.D. Vance (R-OH), James Lankford (R-OK), Tommy Tuberville (R-AL), Katie Britt (R-AL), Mike Lee (R-UT), and Joni Ernst (R-IA).