The public housing development where Zeituni Onyango, 56, a native of Kenya, has since January resided stands on Flaherty Way in Boston. Getty Images/Darren McCollester Untold thousands of illegal immigrants live in public housing at a time when hundreds of thousands of citizens and legal residents are stuck waiting years for a spot. Illegal immigrants make up a tiny portion of the 7.1 million people in federal housing, according to government statistics. But authorities may be unaware of thousands more,
Republicans are pushing back on reports that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., beat President Trump in the latest budget shutdown fight, claiming that Congress approved historic funding levels for Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Border Patrol, added miles to the border wall, and erased the cap on criminal illegal immigrants that can be jailed.
Insiders who worked on the deal said that compared to going along with a spending continuing resolution, the GOP scored several wins, though it did not reach the $5.7 billion funding Trump wanted for the wall.
“I know the conventional wisdom is that he lost on the wall in this package. But he gained … under impossible conditions,” said one insider on background.
While a country mile away from being able to declare it a victory, the number of wins the GOP won in the three weeks of negotiations were sizable, said insiders.
What’s more, Trump and GOP negotiators led by Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., and his team blocked several moves by Pelosi and other Democrats to fill the deal with anti-wall moves like lowering spending for ICE and slashing the number of “detention beds” to hold criminal illegal immigrants.
“Pelosi lost. She knew her position on detentions beds was unsustainable and only playing to her fringe. She also said no new miles for the wall,” said the source. “She had to step back from all positions.”
Compared to a simple continuing resolution, or CR, with nothing extra beyond current spending levels set in fiscal 2018, Trump gained extra funding for the wall. A CR would have provided $500 million, said the source, but Trump received $1.375 billion. That is “triple” the number of miles in the fiscal 2018 budget and “nearly three times as much as would have been available under a CR,” said the source.
On detention beds, the number increased 13 percent over fiscal 2018. And when another $750 million in transfer and reprogramming authority is added in, it represents a 44 percent increase, said the source.
What’s more, the bill provides historic funding levels for ICE and Customs and Border Protection, a rejection of liberal efforts to kill the agencies. It was a 7 percent budget increase for a combined $21.5 billion.