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Court temporarily blocks halt to Trump policy forcing asylum-seekers to stay in Mexico

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Court temporarily blocks halt to Trump policy forcing asylum-seekers to stay in Mexico

A federal appeals court on Friday temporarily halted a ruling that would have stopped the Trump administration from forcing asylum-seekers to wait in Mexico as they wait for immigration courts to hear their cases.

The decision by the three-judge panel on the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals blocked a lower ruling from taking effect and gave civil liberties groups until Tuesday to submit arguments on why the asylum policy should be put on hold. The government has until Wednesday to argue why it should remain in place.

On Monday, a federal judge halted the change to the asylum system, saying it violated U.S. law by failing to evaluate the dangers to migrants while in Mexico. The suit was filed by 11 Central American asylum-seekers and advocacy groups who argue forcing asylum-seekers to wait in Mexico puts migrants risk given the uptick in violence there.

AS BORDER CRISIS WORSENS, IMMIGRATION BILLS IN CONGRESS CONTINUE TO STALL

A girl from the Mexican state of Guerrero passes rows of tents as her family waits at a shelter of mostly Mexican and Central American migrants to begin the process of applying for asylum Friday, April 12, 2019, in Tijuana, Mexico. (Associated Press)

A girl from the Mexican state of Guerrero passes rows of tents as her family waits at a shelter of mostly Mexican and Central American migrants to begin the process of applying for asylum Friday, April 12, 2019, in Tijuana, Mexico. (Associated Press)

Thousands have fled Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador in recent months amid growing gang violence and abject poverty in the region. The ruling comes as more than 2,000 migrants made their way through Mexico on Friday, hoping to reach the U.S.-Mexico border. Mexican authorities said around 350 migrants broke the locks on a gate at the Guatemalan border Friday and forced their way into the country.

The government is asking the 9th Circuit to keep the asylum policy while the lawsuit makes its way through the courts. It argued halting it would endanger the public.

Central American migrants, part of a caravan hoping to reach the U.S. border, walk on the shoulder of a road in Frontera Hidalgo, Mexico on Friday. (Associated Press)

Central American migrants, part of a caravan hoping to reach the U.S. border, walk on the shoulder of a road in Frontera Hidalgo, Mexico on Friday. (Associated Press)

Families seeking asylum are typically released in the U.S. with notices to appear in court. The new policy began in January at the nation’s busiest border crossing in San Diego. More than 1,300 asylum-seekers have been to Mexico so far, according to the Mexican government.

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“I haven’t heard of anyone who’s been sent back since the judge’s order on Monday,” American Civil Liberties Union attorney Judy Rabinovitz said.

The Trump administration has said its stance on asylum is a response to a shortage of detention space for migrants and overwhelmed immigration officials as more migrants appear at the border each day.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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Cindy McCain responds to reports that her family will endorse Joe Biden in 2020 race

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Cindy McCain responds to reports that her family will endorse Joe Biden in 2020 race

Cindy McCain, the widow of late Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., responded to the reports that her family will endorse former Vice President Joe Biden in the 2020 presidential election.

McCain tweeted Wednesday: “Joe Biden is a wonderful man and dear friend of the McCain Family. However, I have no intention of getting involved in presidential politics.”

Her daughter, “The View” host Meghan McCain retweeted the remarks.

JOE BIDEN OFFICIALLY LAUNCHES 2020 PRESIDENTIAL BID

Biden officially announced his candidacy for president Thursday in a video message, capping off weeks of reports that he will join the crowded Democratic field. Biden unsuccessfully ran for president in 1988 and 2008.

McCain’s comment comes after a report in the Washington Examiner that said the McCain family would support Biden. The report cited sources close to the family.

“The source said they expected Meghan McCain to speak out in favor of Biden should he get the nomination, but a Cindy McCain endorsement could come sooner,” according to the Washington Examiner.

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During the 2016 presidential election, Sen. John McCain withdrew his support for then-candidate Donald Trump following the “Access Hollywood” tape. Trump recently criticized McCain by saying he was not “a fan” of the late senator. McCain died in August 2018 after a battle with cancer. Trump has made a habit of attacking McCain, even after his death.

Fox News’ Liam Quinn contributed to this report.

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Ocasio-Cortez-aligned group attacks Biden, says he’s ‘out-of-touch’ with Democratic Party

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Joe Biden announces 2020 presidential bid: 3 things to know about the former vice president

A progressive political group that boosted New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez‘s bid for Congress last year vowed to oppose former Vice President Joe Biden in the 2020 Democratic presidential primary, blasting him as part of the “old guard” and accusing him of standing in opposition to the “center of energy” in the Democratic Party.

JOE BIDEN OFFICIALLY LAUNCHES 2020 PRESIDENTIAL BID

“While we’re going to support the Democratic nominee, we can’t let a so-called ‘centrist’ like Joe Biden divide the Democratic Party and turn it into the party of ‘No, we can’t,’” the group Justice Democrats said Thursday.

Biden announced his candidacy for president Thursday. He enters a crowded field of Democratic contenders aiming to unseat President Trump — nearly 32 years after he announced his first campaign for president. The campaign is Biden’s third bid for the White House, having also unsuccessfully run in 1988 and 2008.

“The old guard of the Democratic Party failed to stop Trump, and they can’t be counted on to lead the fight against his divide-and-conquer politics today,” Justice Democrats said. “The party needs new leadership with a bold vision capable of energizing voters in the Democratic base who stayed home in 2016.”

The group added: “Joe Biden stands in near complete opposition to where the center of energy is in the Democratic Party today.”

BIDEN’S SENATE RECORDS HELD BY HIS ALMA MATER WON’T BE RELEASED UNTIL LATE 2019, POSSIBLY EVEN LATER

“Democrats are increasingly uniting around progressive populist policies like ‘Medicare-for-All,’ a Green New Deal, free college, rejecting corporate money, ending mass incarceration and deportation. We don’t need someone who voted for the Iraq War, for mass incarceration, and for the Bankruptcy Reform Act while voting against gay marriage, reproductive rights, and school desegregation,” Justice Democrats said.

Others, though, took issue with the group’s claim about the energy in the party.

“It’s probably worth noting that while this group, Justice Democrats, calls Biden ‘out-of-touch’ with the ‘center of energy’ in the Democratic Party, only 26 of the 79 candidates it endorsed last year won their primaries, and only 7 of those went on to win the general election,” said Nate Silver, the editor of FiveThirtyEight.

According to its website, Justice Democrats says its mission is “to elect a new type of Democratic majority in Congress, one which will create a thriving economy and democracy that works for the people, not big money interests.”

The attacks could foreshadow the looming clash between the progressive and establishment wings of the party: Biden, along with independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont — who enjoys the support of Democratic Socialists in the party — have consistently topped the polls in the race for the Democratic nomination.

Fox News’ Lillian LeCroy and Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

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Cory Booker’s tax returns shows income from lucrative speaking gigs, royalties

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Cory Booker's tax returns shows income from lucrative speaking gigs, royalties

Democratic presidential candidate Cory Booker’s tax returns show most of his wealth stems from lucrative speaking engagements and royalties.

Booker, the 2020 candidate who has yet to make a splash in the crowded Democratic field, released 10 years of tax returns on Wednesday after numerous other candidates released their records in recent weeks.

WHO ARE THE WEALTHIEST 2020 DEMS? WITH TAX RETURNS IN, THE ANSWER MAY SURPRISE YOU

The New Jersey senator reported income of $152,715 in 2018 for his salary, $22,781 in taxes which amounts to an effective tax rate of 15 percent, significantly lower than Sen. Kamala Harris’ 37 percent or Sen. Bernie Sanders’ 26 percent.

Most of Booker’s wealth comes public speaking fees and royalties, including $2 million in speaking fees between 2009 and 2014, nearly $1 million in royalties from 2015 to 2017 after the release of his book, “United.”

But the lower effective tax rate may have something to with Booker’s sizeable charitable donations. In 2018, he donated $24,000 to charity. In total over the 10-year period, the senator donated nearly $460,000 to various organizations and causes.

BETO O’ROURKE CONFRONTED AT TOWN HALL ABOUT STINGY CHARITABLE DONATIONS

This appears to be significantly more in proportion than his opponents like Sanders or former Congressman Beto O’Rourke, who faced questions over his household giving to charity just $1,166 in 2017, or about 0.3 percent of their income that year.

At the same time, more than half of those donations made by Booker came in 2013 amid criticism of his role in the founding of a social media company called Waywire, prompting him to give massive amounts of stock to charities in his city.

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The New York Times revealed that Booker’s wealth at the time – $5 million – consisted mostly of shares in the company.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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