Politics

Kyrsten Sinema Points Out Biden Hypocrisy On Title 42, COVID

(Photo by Bonnie Cash-Pool/Getty Images)

Dylan Housman Healthcare Reporter
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Democratic Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema took aim at President Joe Biden on Thursday for his administration’s decision to end Title 42 while keeping pandemic restrictions in place for Americans.

Sinema’s office released a statement once again calling for the Biden administration not to end Title 42 until it has a plan in place to secure the border without using the emergency public health provision. In that statement, Sinema pointed out that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is ending Title 42 at the same time it is extending the mask mandate on public transportation for Americans, sending a mixed message on whether Americans can move on from the COVID-19 pandemic or not.

“The Administration’s extension of public health emergency authorities proves the need to delay lifting Title 42 to protect the health and safety of Arizona communities and migrants,” Sinema said. “I’ll keep pushing for transparency and accountability from the Administration to help secure the border, keep Arizona communities safe, and ensure migrants are treated fairly and humanely.”

Title 42 is a public health provision activated by the CDC which allows authorities to turn away asylum seekers at the border due to the threat of spreading a communicable disease in the U.S. It has been deployed by both the Trump and Biden administrations since the start of the pandemic, but Biden’s CDC announced at the start of April that use of Title 42 will end May 23. (RELATED: Biden Administration Ends COVID-19 For Illegal Migrants Before Regular Americans)

The CDC said that the provision was no longer needed given the current state of the pandemic to protect the public health of Americans. However, less than two weeks later, the CDC said it was recommending to the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) that the mask mandate for public transportation, including on airplanes, be extended for at least 15 more days, into May. The mandate had been set to expire April 18. (RELATED: 21 States Sue Biden Admin Over Transportation Mask Mandate)

Sinema isn’t the only Democrat to speak out about the end of Title 42. It has been one of the last remaining Trump-era border restrictions kept in place by the Biden administration, and members of both parties expressed fears that its removal will lead to another massive surge of migrants seeking asylum at the southern border.