AP(Eye) on the Hill is our biweekly highlight of significant federal updates, particularly those that impact AAPI communities regarding reproductive, immigration, and economic justice. Learn about NAPAWF's and other national AAPI groups' federal policy work while you're out on the ground!

Policy Recap

  • Trump administration deports dozens of Cambodian Americans, plans on deporting more Vietnamese Americans
  • Partial government shutdown resumes over debate to fund Trump's border wall 
  • Federal judge in Texas rules the Affordable Care Act unconstitutional, ruling will very likely be overturned in court

 

Trump administration deports dozens of Cambodian Americans, plans on deporting more Vietnamese Americans

Image source: HuffPost

On December 17, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) deported another group of at least 35 Cambodian Americans, making 2018 the year with the highest number of Cambodian deportations in US history. Without an emergency pardon from Governor Jay Inslee of Washington, the group of deportees was originally at 50. Also in December, the US and Vietnamese governments met to reinterpret a 2008 agreement that prevented the deportation of Vietnamese refugees and immigrants who arrived in the US prior to 1995: the Trump administration now believes that pre-1995 immigrants from Vietnam can be subject to deportation.

  • Read our report with the Southeast Asia Resource Action Center (SEARAC) on the effects of detention and deportation on Southeast Asian women and their families
  • Learn more about Southeast Asian Americans and deportation policy
  • Read about Nielsen v. Preap, a Supreme Court case on immigration detention that has enormous implications for Southeast Asian Americans

 

Partial government shutdown resumes over debate to fund Trump's border wall

Image source: CNN

On December 22, several federal agencies were shut down after Congress failed to pass legislation funding the government for the following fiscal year. Trump and Congressional Democrats came to an impasse on whether or not the spending bill would include $5.7 billion for Trump's border wall, a move that Democrats strongly stand against. As the Democrats take the majority in the House starting January 3, funding plans are likely to be stopped by the Republican-led Senate. Until an agreement is reached, nearly 400,000 federal employees will be unable to work and receive pay.

  • Stay up to date on what may happen next with the government shutdown
  • Learn more about why a border wall is a bad idea and a waste of federal taxpayer dollars

 

Federal judge in Texas rules the Affordable Care Act unconstitutional, ruling will very likely be overturned in court

Image source: Axios

On December 14, a federal judge in Texas issued an opinion against the Affordable Care Act (ACA), saying that the individual mandate portion of the law is unconstitutional. The judge stated that the individual mandate is "inseverable" from the rest of the ACA, which is then therefore declared as unconstitutional. The case, Texas v. Azar, is likely to move up to the Supreme Court. While there are no immediate effects, if the ruling stands, millions of Americans would lose their healthcare. Under the ACA, an estimated 2.5 million AAPI women gained coverage for preventive services such as HPV testing, prenatal care, and breastfeeding support. Between 2010 and 2015, in which the ACA went into effect, the uninsured rate for AAPIs fell by seven percentage points.

  • Read this fact sheet by NAPAWF, National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health, In Our Own Voice: National Black Women's Reproductive Justice Agenda, and the National Partnership for Women and Families about how attempts to gut the ACA are attacks on reproductive justice for women of color
  • Track all of the attacks on the ACA in the last two years

 

Stay vigilant and up to date on legal news by following our new legal blog, AP(eye) on the Courts!

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