Three Michigan members of Congress and one from Ohio are speaking out after visiting refugee children at Bethany Christian Services in Grand Rapids. Republican Bill Huizenga of Zeeland says Congress needs to take action now, and they can’t wait for a perfect solution on immigration.
“If you have to wait until you have 100% agreement, nothing’s going to be happening,” said Huizenga. “As I always say, we have to be talking, and we do talk as colleagues.”
Congressman Dan Kildee of Flint says getting families back together after they were separated at the border with Mexico should not be a partisan issue.
“Go see a four-year-old child sitting at a table drawing a picture of a turtle and wondering where his mom is, and politics is the last thing on your mind.”
Huizenga, Kildee, Congresswoman Debbie Dingell of Dearborn and Congressman Tim Ryan of Ohio visited a Bethany Christian Services facility in Grand Rapids on Thursday. While they said there were no issues with the care offered by the facilities, Ryan still had strong words because the kids are being kept from their parents.
“This is state-sanctioned abuse on behalf of the United States,” Ryan told reporters. “There’s no other way to put it.”
Their visit came as Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar has revised the number of children separated from their parents from 2,300 upward to under 3,000 and revealed they are using DNA matching to reunite some parents with their children.