The US Supreme Court has given the go-ahead to Trump administration plans that severely limit the ability of migrants to claim asylum. Under the rule, people arriving via a third country must claim asylum there first before arriving at the US border.Legal challenges against it continue but the ruling means for now it can be enforced nationwide.President Donald Trump tweeted that it was a “BIG United States Supreme Court WIN for the Border on Asylum!”.Curbing migration to the US has been a key goal of his presidency and forms a major part of his bid for re-election in 2020. When it was unveiled this year in July it was almost immediately blocked from taking effect so the move is being seen as a victory for the Trump administration in US media.What do the changes mean?Migrants from Central America travel north, often on foot, through Mexico until they reach the US border. Many of those arriving are fleeing violence or poverty.In practice the changes mean that migrants from Honduras, Nicaragua and El Salvador must first claim asylum in a neighbouring country or Mexico. But it affects people from beyond the region too.
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Media captionThe Africans risking death in the jungle trying to reach the US
The American Civil Liberties Union, which challenged the ruling, argued it drastically limited those eligible for asylum.”The current ban would eliminate virtually all asylum at the southern border, even at ports of entry, for everyone except Mexicans,” it said in a petition. Anyone who has been rejected by a third country or is a victim of human trafficking can still apply. Why is this controversial?The policy overturns long-standing convention that the US hears asylum claims however people have arrived at the border.On the nine-judge Supreme Court liberal-leaning Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor dissented from the ruling.”Once again the Executive Branch has issued a rule that seeks to upend longstanding practices regarding refugees who seek shelter from persecution,” Justice Sotomayor wrote.
Migrants at the border last month in Matamoros, Tamaulipas, Mexico
The route to the US is dangerous, with Central American migrants often deliberately sought out by gangs in neighbouring countries because they are vulnerable.There are questions over whether Mexico and Guatemala can cope with a surge in asylum claimants.Mexico has also repeatedly refused to become a US “third country” meaning it would be obliged to first consider asylum claims from people wanting to enter the US.
Step into the shoes of a migrantMaria is fictional. But everything that happens to her here is based on the real experiences of migrants who have travelled to America, experiences that have been documented by rights groups, journalists and lawyers.See for yourself the decisions and dangers a migrant like Maria may face.
Obama urges voters to focus on down-ballot races to combat gerrymandering
The video represents the latest attempt by top Democrats to focus attention on down-ballot races, like those for state legislatures across the country. The party hopes that they can take control of a handful of state legislatures in November, wins that could be key because the state bodies elected in 2020 will play major roles…
“You’ve heard a lot about the presidential race, maybe too much,” Obama says in a video for NowThis News, “but there is a lot more that will be on the ballot this fall.”
Obama adds: “In this election, the state leaders we elect will help redraw electoral districts all across the country.”
Obama is not new to the fight over redistricting and has focused a portion of his post-presidency work on the issue, including by folding his Organizing for Action group into the National Democratic Redistricting Committee, a group run by his former attorney general, Eric Holder, that looks to link Democratic issues with the need to take on gerrymandering.
“President Obama has said this is an all hands on deck moment, and one of the main drivers is redistricting that will happen based on November’s results,” Eric Schultz, an Obama adviser, said. “Now more than ever, we need to elect Democrats up and down the ballot. The Presidential campaign generally gets most of the attention, but President Obama believes these other races are mission-critical.”
The former president says in the video that he doesn’t think people “completely appreciate how much gerrymandering affects the outcome” of elections. The video then notes how Republicans swept into control in key states during the 2010 elections, allowing them to redraw maps in places like Georgia, Louisiana, Texas and Ohio.
Obama argues that many priorities of his presidency, including immigration reform and gun control measures, were thwarted, in part, because of gerrymandered districts electing Republicans to Congress.
“Those maps will stand for 10 years, that could mean a decade of fairly drawn districts where folks have an equal voice in their government, or it could mean a decade of unfair partisan gerrymandering,” Obama says in the video.
The video was made with NowThis News, a progressive mobile news outlet.
Democrats, emboldened by considerable excitement among their party’s key voters, hope they can flip at least one legislative body in Texas, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Arizona and Minnesota. And the party hopes it can make substantial inroads in states like Ohio, Wisconsin, Kansas, Georgia and Florida.
Groups like the National Democratic Redistricting Committee and Forward Majority, a super PAC that aims to pour millions into key state legislative races, have been leading the fight to focus Democratic attention to these races.
Forward Majority announced earlier this month that they would direct $15 million into state legislative races in Texas, Florida, North Carolina and Arizona, so-called Sun Belt states where Democrats believe President Donald Trump could lead voters to reject Republicans in November.
“Without having a seat at the table next year, we will likely see an unprecedented level of gerrymandering,” said Forward Majority co-founder Vicky Hausman, who argued that these four states “represent the most powerful points of leverage in our democracy.”
The is partly a newfound focus for Democrats on down-ballot races like state legislatures. Republicans spent millions to control the legislative bodies over the last decades, leading Democrats to lose control of several state legislatures during Obama’s presidency.
But Democratic groups have been making the case, like Obama does in the video, that these local officials wield notable power on everything from how a state responds to something like the coronavirus pandemic to how they deal with issues of police brutality.
“This year, educate yourself on the candidates at every level on your ballot,” Obama says. “They can make a profound impact on your community and our country.”
The Atlantic writer: ‘I scared myself’ writing this story – CNN Video
The Atlantic staff writer Barton Gellman tells CNN’s Don Lemon that he believes President Trump will not concede defeat if he loses the 2020 presidential election.
Outrage over lack of charges in Breonna Taylor’s death turns into protests across the US
(CNN)Outrage and heartbreak boiled over into protests in many cities across the US on Wednesday after news broke that none of the three officers involved in Breonna Taylor’s death were charged with her killing.More than six months after Taylor was shot to death after Louisville police officers broke down the door to her apartment while…
(CNN)Outrage and heartbreak boiled over into protests in many cities across the US on Wednesday after news broke that none of the three officers involved in Breonna Taylor’s death were charged with her killing.More than six months after Taylor was shot to death after Louisville police officers broke down the door to her apartment while executing a warrant, a grand jury decided to indict only one of the three officers involved on first-degree wanton endangerment charges. The charge applies to the risk put on Taylor’s neighbors, but does not hold the officer responsible for her death. From Louisville to Los Angeles, Atlanta and New York, masses of people congregated to protest the decision. Police in Portland declared protests gathered outside the Justice Center a riot. And in Seattle, 13 people were arrested after a night of multiple fires and protesters throwing glass bottles and fireworks at police, authorities said. “We will go to our graves proclaiming that Breonna Taylor did not get justice from the Kentucky attorney general’s office,” attorney for the Taylor family, Ben Crump, told CNN’s Don Lemon Wednesday.Taylor, a 26-year-old Black emergency room technician and aspiring nurse, was described by relatives as a hard-working, goal-oriented young woman who placed an emphasis on family, Crump said demonstrations over her death are “righteous anger.”In anticipation of potential unrest, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer signed an executive order setting a statewide 72-hour curfew starting at 9:00 p.m. Wednesday. 2 officers shot in Louisville protestsShortly before the curfew began, there were reports of gunfire near one of the marches in Louisville. Two of the responding officers were shot and had non-life-threatening wounds, Interim Police Chief Robert Schroeder told reporters. A suspect was in custody, he added.Three videos obtained by CNN appear to show the gunshots and the scene that was set before they rang out. One video livestreamed by the Louisville Metro Police Department shows police moving forward as three apparent flash bands are fired into the air toward the protesters. Nine shots can be heard in a police video.”Shots fired, shots fired,” a voice is heard saying on the police livestream. “Officers down … take cover.” One officer is in surgery, Schroeder told reporters. The FBI Louisville office is asking for the public to continue to submit any videos related to the shooting of the officers, according to a post on the FBI’s website.Meanwhile, another suspect was detained in Denver, where police say a vehicle was driven into a protest Wednesday night. There were no injuries, police said in a tweet.At least one person was knocked to the ground in the protest that was peaceful up until the vehicle rammed into the crowd, CNN affiliate KCNC reported. The deadly raid on Breonna Taylor’s homeThe incident that ended Taylor’s life began with a narcotics investigation on March 13. Former Det. Brett Hankison, Sgt. John Mattingly and Det. Myles Cosgrove were executing a search warrant on Taylor’s home, though her ex-boyfriend was the focus of the narcotics investigation. Her ex-boyfriend was arrested on drug charges last month and told a Kentucky newspaper that she had nothing to do with the probe into an alleged drug trade that spurred the warrant. Taylor was sleeping next to her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker III, in the early hours of March 13, when they heard a noise. They both got up and walked to the door.”She’s yelling at the top of her lungs — and I am too at this point — ‘who is it?’ ” recalled Walker, her boyfriend. “No answer. No response. No anything.”Police forced entry into the home, and Walker said he couldn’t see but he fired one shot. After entering, Mattingly was shot in the leg, Attorney General Daniel Cameron said on Wednesday. The chaotic police operation that night was exacerbated by Hankison, who was accused by his own department of “blindly” firing 10 bullets into Taylor’s apartment from an outdoor patio. Hankison was fired in June, the Louisville police chief said, but he is appealing his termination. His attorney, David Leightty, has declined to comment.Cameron argued the officers were “justified in their use of force” because Taylor’s boyfriend fired first. Charges aren’t related to her deathHankison was charged with endangering not Taylor’s life, but those of the people in the next apartment, Crump said. Crump said the decision was an insult to Taylor’s family and an outrage to the community.”The fact that you’re going to charge for bullets going into an apartment but not for bullets going into Breonna Taylor’s body is outrageous,” Crump told CNN’s Don Lemon Wednesday. “There are two justice systems in America: one for Black America, one for White America.”First-degree wanton endangerment is a Class D felony, the lowest of four classes of felonies. The maximum sentence is five years; the minimum is one year.The NAACP said in a statement that the justice system “failed” Taylor and the charges against one officer do “not go far enough.””The decision before my office is not to decide if the loss of Breonna Taylor’s life was a tragedy,” said Cameron, the first Black person to hold the post and a rising Republican star. “The answer to that question is unequivocally yes.”Cameron called the Taylor’s death “a gut-wrenching emotional case.” He defended the length of the investigation, saying the time reflected “how important it was to get this right.””I certainly understand the pain that has been brought about by the tragic loss of Ms. Taylor. I understand that as an attorney general who is responsible for all 120 counties, in terms of being the chief legal officer — the chief law enforcement officer, I understand that. I understand that as a Black man — how painful this is, which is why it was so incredibly important to make sure that we did everything we possibly could to uncover every fact.”CNN’s Eric Levenson, Konstantin Toropin, Mark Morales and Shimon Prokupecz contributed to this report.