Supreme Court Gearing Up

The Supreme Court has made a series of impactful decisions recently, both agreeing to hear certain cases as well as declining to hear others.

From declining to rule on the legality of Trump’s ban on transgender soldiers serving in the military to allowing the rule to be enforced without a decision, the Supreme Court has been making a lot of interesting decisions lately.

Keep reading for a breakdown of each of these landmark decisions.

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More Family Separation

The inspector general of the Department of Health and Human Services reports that thousands more families were separated by the administration than previously thought.

In a report released Thursday, the HHS inspector general concluded that the Trump administration not only separated thousands more children than previously thought, but that there is no effective system in place for tracking those children.

The inspector general’s findings come months after a federal judge ordered the administration to reunite all immigrant children with their families or guardians and shows that the administration may have never known exactly how many families it separated.

The Mortgage is Due

First Nations and indigenous peoples are being disproportionately affected by the shutdown due to their dependence on a host of government agencies and services which have been compromised.

From federally funded medical programs to food delivery services, Native communities are facing a dire lack of resources and support as we edge nearer to a full month of partially-functioning government.

In addition to critical services and products such as healthcare and food, streets in certain communities have gone unplowed for weeks, leaving people to try and dig themselves out or face the risk of being snowed in at home.

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Trump Requests a Meeting Amidst Shutdown Crisis

As the government shutdown enters its second week and the chaos ramps up, the president has requested a bipartisan meeting with lawmakers.

TSA agents are working the holiday travel rush without pay and visitors at national parks are being forced to defecate in the roads as the shutdown over border wall funding continues.

In the first display of cooperation in weeks, the president is calling for a bipartisan meeting with lawmakers to discuss a solution.

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Immigrant Boy Dies on Christmas Eve

Customs and Border Protection, which had custody of the boy and his father, announced the child’s death Tuesday around midday.

UPDATED 12/27/18 1:00 PM PST

The 8-year-old boy apparently fell ill Monday and died in a New Mexico hospital Tuesday, early on Christmas morning.

His name was Felipe Gómez Alonso, and was reportedly of Guatemalan origin. The government has been notified of his passing.

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Asylum Ban Blocked by SCOTUS

Today, the Supreme Court upheld the block on the administration’s ban against immigrants who cross the border outside a legal port of entry and their ability to apply for asylum.

It was a narrow 5-4 decision with Chief Justice John Roberts again siding with the liberal faction of the court as the deciding vote.

Justices Samuel Alito, Brett Kavanaugh, Neil Gorsuch, and Clarence Thomas all voted in support of the ban.

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House Buckles to Trump’s Demands

After a tumultuous day of many back-and-forth decisions, the House passed a funding bill with $5 billion allocated for the construction of a wall at the U.S.-Mexico border.

The vote was 217 to 185; funding for multiple government agencies will expire at midnight tonight.

The bill will now return to the Senate where it is widely expected to fail due to extreme opposition to such immense funding.

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All Asylum Seekers to Stay in Mexico

The Trump administration has announced that all asylum seekers attempting to enter the country through the southern border will be kept in Mexico while their claim is processed.

The policy will apply to all asylum seekers regardless of whether Mexico is their country of origin or not.

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen indicated that part of the reasoning behind the policy has to do with the Flores settlement, which prevents the U.S. government from detaining children for an extended period of time.

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BREAKING: Funding Bill Falls Apart

Only hours after it appeared as though the government would avoid a shutdown, the president has reversed course and says he will not sign the bill.

House Speaker Paul Ryan made the grim announcement Thursday mid-afternoon, attributing the change in course to the fact that the bill does not contain what the president considers to be adequate funding for the border wall he wants to construct along the U.S.-Mexico border.

The prevailing opinion is that the president is making a last-ditch effort to push the border wall funding through before Democrats take control of the House in January.

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Shutdown Temporarily Averted

The Senate was able to pass a short-term spending bill to avoid a government shutdown just ahead of the holidays.

Assuming the House passes the bill as well, which appears highly likely, it will keep the government funded through February 8.

The decision will postpone the ongoing battle over border wall funding until next year when the incoming Democratic majority in the House will take control.

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