End of Show Mixes: - UKPMX - Gx2 -Oh My Bosh - Danny Loos-Secret Agent Paul-Stepford Wives-PlaceBoing- Dave Courbanou - Able Kirby - Jungle Jones - Chris Wilson - Tom Starkweather - Conan Salada - Future Trash - Phantomville Billy Bon3s
Are Florida's election officials merely incompetent, or is there a sinister plot afoot to throw the election results towards Democrats?
Three days after election night, when Gov. Rick Scott delivered a victory speech and held a comfortable margin of votes against Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson, loads of ballots favoring the Democratic candidate mysteriously turned up in Palm Beach and Broward counties '-- where one official has a history of violating election laws.
State law requires that all early and by-mail votes be tabulated within 30 minutes of the polls closing, but three days later, Broward County Supervisor of Elections Dr. Brenda Snipes still refuses to specify how many people voted, how many ballots have been tabulated, and how many are left to count.
Since Tuesday, 80,000 new votes have mysteriously turned up in Broward County and another 15,000 in Palm Beach County. These newly discovered ballots have been ''breaking almost 3-to-1 in favor of Democrats,'' narrowing the margin between these two candidates to likely force a recount after Saturday's noon deadline requiring all counties to turn over election results to the state Division of Elections.
Snipes's History Of Incompetence and LawbreakingSnipes is no stranger to controversy. Her office has broken the law and repeatedly botched election counting. In 2016 a judge ruled that her office had violated federal and state laws by destroying ballots too quickly after a congressional race.
Then-Democratic congressional candidate Tim Canova asked to see the paper ballots to examine voter irregularities in his failed bid to unseat Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz. Snipes ignored his request and destroyed the ballots months later, even signing a certificate saying there was no ongoing legal challenge involving the ballots.
Why would she sign such a certificate when she knew there was a pending legal challenge? Was it to cover something up, or was it because she simply didn't care about telling the truth and adhering to the law? Either answer is equally troubling, as one might hope the person in charge of overseeing the integrity of elections would be honest and forthcoming, or at a minimum follow the rules.
In 2003, about 58,000 ballots were reported missing and in 2004, her office was counting votes days after the election took place. In 2006, her office was still counting ballots long after other counties had submitted their results, due to the possibility that ballots were still left in the machines.
Local reporters have asked her repeatedly what has been taking so long to count the votes, and have gotten no clear answers. Jeff Weisner, an investigative reporter for ABC affiliate Local 10 News, confronted Snipes on camera about what is taking so long to tabulate vote counts, to which she explained that other ''counties didn't have 600,000 votes out there.''
''Well, Miami-Dade did,'' Weinsier said.
''Well, have you been inside my '-- never mind, let me go check. I'll check,'' Snipes said.
Why is she so flippant about flouting Florida's election laws? With a U.S. Senate race on the line, one might think this deserves a somewhat believable explanation. Instead she's offered flimsy excuses or nothing.
Republicans Are Rightly Worried Election Integrity Is ShotOn Thursday night, Scott filed a lawsuit against Broward and Palm Beach counties for their refusal to be transparent. Following Scott's lawsuit, Florida Department of Law Enforcement confirmed it will launch investigations into these counties and their respective supervisors, The Hill reported.
At a court hearing on Friday morning in Palm Beach County, Judge Krista Marx ordered that ''any ballot that the supervisor of Elections Susan Bucher or her staff throws out will need to go in front of the canvassing board,'' NBC affiliate WPTV reported. ''Marx also ordered Bucher to provide a list by 4 p.m. of everyone who voted by provisional ballot.''
Republican Sen. Marco Rubio has been on a tweet storm decrying a lack of transparency from Broward County officials.
Early Voting in #BrowardCounty ended 108 hours ago. Every other county,including neighboring Miami-Dade (which had 100k more votes cast) was able to canvass,tabulate & report to state by deadline. But #Broward still hasn't finished & won't disclose how many ballots are left.
'-- Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) November 9, 2018
The incompetence of & the violation of #Florida reporting requirements by #BrowardCounty elections dept could impact more than just the outcome
The last thing our already dangerously divided nation needs is an important election 1/2 our people believe was rigged by the other 1/2
'-- Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) November 9, 2018
They have good reason to worry, as the newly discovered ballots have already tipped the scales in favor of Democrat Nikki Fried over Rep. Matt Caldwell by 2,841 votes in the Florida agriculture commissioner race.
Snipe's office broke the law by failing to give a vote count on time. And the validity of the newly discovered ballots heavily favoring Democrats should be questioned.
Democrats Confident Broward County Will Tip Them a WinIn an interview with the Orlando Sentinel, one of Nelson's attorneys said he's confident the untabulated votes that mysteriously keep turning up without explanation will carry Democrats to victory.
'We believe at the end of the day, Sen. Nelson is going to be declared the winner and return to the U.S. Senate,' said Marc Elias, a recount attorney hired by the Nelson campaign, in a conference call.
Elias pointed to significant numbers of ballots not yet tabulated in Broward, where even Snipes said Wednesday night, 'I can't give you an exact number. I'm not sure. I'm really not sure.'
Already, however, national media outlets are working to discredit election integrity fears. NPR ran a story with the following headline: ''As Florida Races Narrow, Trump And Scott Spread Claims Of Fraud Without Evidence.'' This was The Washington Post's headline: ''After Trump and Scott cry 'fraud,' critics pounce on Broward County's troubled election history.''
Why are Democrats so sure these missing ballots will hold the key to victory? Why are members of the news media attempting to minimize legitimate concerns about the validity of the election results?
Democrats frequently poo poo concerns of election integrity, oppose voter ID laws, push for former felons to regain the right to vote, and dismiss reports of illegal immigrants and dead people casting ballots. It's no surprise the party whose only concern about ballot integrity comes when the Constitution gets in the way of electoral victory is nonchalant about what's happening in Florida. The murkier the electoral process is, the more the Democratic Party wins.
Copyright (C) 2018 The Federalist, a wholly independent division of FDRLST Media, All Rights Reserved.
Florida Recount: Ballots Are Still Inside a Miami-Dade Post Office | Miami New Times
Miami-Dade County announced today that it has finished counting votes for the 2018 election.
But photos obtained by New Times show scores of mail-in ballots sitting inside an Opa-locka mail distribution center '-- the same center that was evacuated last month after alleged mail bomber Cesar Sayoc's pipe bombs passed through the facility.
Several local activists demonstrated outside both the mail facility and at the Miami-Dade County Elections Department to try to bring attention to the ballots. Two sources who spoke with New Times allege hundreds of ballots might still be inside.
Suzy Trutie, a spokesperson for the Elections Department, told New Times her office was aware of the ballots but confirmed nothing else about them. She said that, per state law, any ballots not delivered to the Miami-Dade Elections Department by 7 p.m. on Election Day could not be counted toward the 2018 total.
"We do our best to educate voters that, if you're voting vote-by-mail, then your ballot had to be at the Elections Department by Tuesday, November 6," she said. "Not everybody mailed back in time."
Asked whether the ballots had been sitting inside the Opa-locka center undelivered on Election Day '-- or when the place was evacuated '-- Trutie referred questions to the United States Postal Service. (After this story was initially published, Trutie added that the Elections Department ran daily post-office pick-ups this election season, and picked up ballots three different times on Election Day.)
Ty Russell, a reporter with CBS Miami, tweeted minutes ago that he'd spoken with USPS and that it was not aware of any ballots being mishandled.
From USPS ''we have no information to suggest any ballots were not properly handled and provided to local election officials, per our established process.'' Election leaders told me they'll receive mail in ballots from people who sent them late but they won't be counted. @CBSMiami https://t.co/YshLhTf1mT
'-- Ty Russell (@TRussellCBS4) November 9, 2018After this story was initially published, the USPS confirmed to the Miami Herald that the agency is still investigating the way the ballots were handled. U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson's office also told the Herald that she spoke to the USPS and that the agency told her the ballots had been postmarked after Election Day and were thus ineligible. State law does, however, provide a 10-day extension for overseas voters and members of the military.
But sources who spoke with New Times privately worried that ballots had potentially been sitting inside the mailroom for days or weeks before Election Day. Sources expressed frustration that more wasn't done to collect outstanding ballots before the 7 p.m. election deadline. One source who claimed to have reported the issues to the Elections Department said that the Opa-locka distribution center was understaffed and that there were not enough employees to handle the flood of ballots that had come in just before the election.
The day after the election, a Twitter user posted a clip purporting to show a USPS worker in Miami explaining what was going on. The woman said ballots were sitting on the floor hours after the delivery deadline had passed.
We are at the Miami Elections Department chasing vote by mail and overseas ballots stuck at a post office processing center in Opa Locka. Election officials told us they were invalidated because they were not at their office by 7pm election day. Absolute insanity. #CountEveryVote pic.twitter.com/F9QfljU5bh
'-- Tomas Kennedy (@tomaskenn) November 9, 2018While there is still no direct evidence that the post office failed to deliver valid votes, such an issue has occurred in the past in other cities. Earlier this year, the USPS delivered nearly 2,000 pieces of late, first-class mail to the New York City Board of Elections '-- including 533 valid ballots that should have counted in the November 2017 election, according to the public-radio station WNYC. The margins in Florida's 2018 midterm races, meanwhile, are razor-thin: Ron DeSantis and Rick Scott currently lead their Democratic opponents, Andrew Gillum and Bill Nelson, by less than one-half percentage point each. Scott seems particularly nervous about a looming recount in his race and has sued the Broward and Palm Beach County Supervisors of Election in what appears to be an attempt to slow or stop the ballot-counting process. Scott, without a shred of evidence, alleges Broward is committing "election fraud" and "stealing" the race for the Democrats, but the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, which answers to Scott, says no formal allegation of fraud has been filed.
The race for agriculture commissioner is also headed to a recount. Progressive Democrat Nikki Fried leads Republican Matt Caldwell by just a few thousand votes.
Miami-Dade County is a left-leaning county but does contain pockets of hard-right voters. It's quite possible a few hundred extra ballots from Dade could have changed the margins in the election; however, at the moment, it's unclear how many might have been left undelivered by postal workers '-- or if ballots just truly did not arrive by mail in time. The Miami-Dade Elections Department, however, says it is still "continuing to receive ballots" by mail. Those ballots, the department says, won't be counted.
The Opa-locka debacle may explain why one Miami-Dade voter's ballot never made it to the elections office. Kirk Nielsen, a former New Times writer who lives in Coral Gables, says he mailed his ballot at a University of Miami post office on October 29 but learned after Election Day that it hadn't been received.
''Of course I wonder if my ballot is sitting in the Opa-locka mail facility, along with many others,'' he says. ''I hope there's an investigation.''
Having voted by mail in several prior elections, Nielsen says he knew how to check the Miami-Dade elections website to see when his ballot arrived. When he checked on Tuesday afternoon, however, the site informed him that his ballot hadn't been received yet. Nielsen briefly considered driving to his polling place to fill out a provisional ballot but ultimately assured himself it was probably just a matter of the website not being updated.
When he called the elections office the next day, however, a representative told him his ballot wasn't counted and had never even arrived.
''I was disappointed there wasn't more concern, like, 'Oh, well we better try to go find your ballot,'' he says.
On Friday, Nielsen still had no idea what happened to his mail-in ballot.
''There are bigger questions,'' he says. ''It's not really about how I feel, but it's like, where is my ballot?''
Reporter Jessica Lipscomb contributed to this story.
Watch: Putin's warm thumbs-up to Trump at Paris commemorations | Euronews
This is the moment Russian President Vladimir Putin gave his US counterpart Donald Trump a warm thumbs-up gesture in Paris.
The pair came face-to-face at the Arc de Triomphe as the French capital hosted events to mark 100 years since the Armistice came into force.
Putin is seen greeting French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and then Trump, adding a sign of approval before moving onto US First Lady Melania.
It comes after the US leader said he will also not hold a bilateral meeting with Putin in Paris.
They are instead expected to have formal talks later this month when both attend a G-20 summit in Buenos Aires.
Trump's relationship with Putin is under scrutiny as an investigation continues into Russia's alleged attempts to interfere in the US presidential poll in 2016, which saw the billionaire elected to the White House.
Trump's insults toward black reporters, candidates echo 'historic playbooks,' critics say - News - Sarasota Herald-Tribune - Sarasota, FL
Over the past several days, Trump has launched personal attacks against a trio of black female journalists.
PARIS - President Trump's verbal assaults against black reporters, candidates and lawmakers has renewed criticism that the president employs insults rooted in racist tropes aimed at making his African-American targets appear unintelligent, untrustworthy and unqualified.
Over the past several days, including before he left Washington for an Armistice Day ceremony here this weekend, Trump has launched personal attacks against a trio of black female journalists. He accused one of asking "a lot of stupid questions." He demanded another "sit down" at a news conference and followed up later by calling her a "loser." He lambasted a third for asking, in his view, a "racist question."
Trump recently called Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, D, a gubernatorial candidate in Florida, a "thief," and declared that Stacey Abrams, the former minority leader of the state Senate in Georgia and the Democratic candidate for governor there, was "not qualified" for the job. A feature of his campaign rallies ahead of Tuesday's elections was mocking Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., a black lawmaker who has been highly critical of him, and calling her a "low-IQ person."
Trump's supporters say he fights all opponents with equal gusto, and he has gone after other reporters in an escalation of his war against the media since emerging from a bruising midterm election - most notably stripping the White House pass of CNN's Jim Acosta.
But the president's rhetoric toward prominent African Americans is being singled out as far more offensive.
"His supporters are right, he does attack everyone. That's clearly true," said Adia Harvey Wingfield, a sociology professor at Washington University in St. Louis who writes frequently about race and gender. "But there's also a clear commonality in the attacks he levels against people of color and black professionals. These are straight out of historic playbooks about black workers and professionals in particular - not being qualified, not being intelligent or having what it takes to succeed in a predominantly white environment."
The latest example came Friday when the president stopped on the South Lawn of the White House on his way to Marine One to field shouted questions from the assembled media. He was asked several questions about the role of Matthew Whitaker, who he appointed as acting attorney general Wednesday, as well as about several other topics.
But when Abby Phillip, a CNN correspondent, asked whether Trump wanted Whitaker to rein in the special counsel's ongoing Russia investigation, he snapped.
"What a stupid question that is," Trump replied to Phillip, who is black. "What a stupid question," he repeated, pointing his finger at her. "But I watch you a lot. You ask a lot of stupid questions."
The attack prompted an outpouring of support from fellow journalists, Democrats and others for Phillip, who previously covered the White House for The Washington Post. Many praised her for asking the most important and pertinent question of the day.
But Trump's supporters reveled in the exchange, holding it up as an example of Trump showing his tormentors who is the boss.
"If you ask stupid questions, be prepared for @realDonaldTrump to call you out. #MAGA," Harlan Z. Hill, a Republican operative and commentator, wrote on Twitter to his 171,000 followers, linking to a video clip of the exchange. The tweet had racked up more than 1,800 retweets and 5,000 "likes" within a few hours.
CNN's communications department defended Phillip, saying that "she asked the most pertinent question of the day. The @realDonaldTrump's personal insults are nothing new. And never surprising."
Several White House officials did not respond to a request for comment for this report.
Trump has assembled a largely white roster of senior advisers. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson is the only African American among the Cabinet and senior White House staff.
Since taking office, the president has repeatedly questioned the intelligence of black public figures. Perhaps most vicious have been his persistent attacks on Waters as "low IQ" and calling her the de facto leader of the Democratic Party.
But Trump has similarly called CNN's Don Lemon the "dumbest man on television" and, after Lemon interviewed basketball star LeBron James, said in a tweet that the television anchor, who is black, "made Lebron look smart, which isn't easy to do." James had been critical of Trump, calling him a "bum" after the president revoked an invitation for the NBA champion Golden State Warriors to visit the White House amid reports that the team didn't want to attend.
Trump also has called Rep. Frederica Wilson, D-Fla., "wacky" and disparaged his former aide Omarosa Manigault Newman as a "dog" after she wrote a tell-all book that accused him of using racist language.
"There is a pattern," said April Ryan, who has covered the White House for America Urban Radio Networks since President Bill Clinton's second term and now is also a CNN political analyst.
During a formal Trump news conference at the White House on Wednesday, Trump demanded that Ryan "sit down" after she repeatedly attempted to ask him a question about alleged voter suppression in the midterms. Trump was so steamed about it that he brought up the incident again Friday during his impromptu performance on the South Lawn, calling her a "loser" in a rambling answer to a question about Acosta.
In an interview, Ryan, who is black, noted that Trump often hails his accomplishments for African Americans, citing historically low unemployment rates during his rallies.
But "there's a lot of shock-and-awe moments that make you turn head and say 'Wow!'" she said. "Black people have been down this road before . . . name-calling, derogatory statement against those in this community who are held in high regard and hold positions to help. It's not going unnoticed."
Last year, Jemele Hill, a prominent sports journalist who is black, called Trump a "white supremacist" on Twitter, prompting White House press secretary Sarah Sanders to call it a "fireable offense." Hill was warned by her employer at the time, ESPN, and she called the remark inappropriate. She has since left ESPN.
More recently, Michael Cohen, who served for years as Trump's personal lawyer before they severed ties after Cohen was indicted, said he had heard Trump use racist language in the past. Asked about the allegations at the White House on Wednesday, Trump flatly denied it. "I would never do that and I don't use racist remarks," he said.
Trump has sought to insulate himself against criticism over race by inviting prominent black figures, such as influential Christian pastors, to the White House to talk about such issues as criminal justice reform. Several weeks ago, he met with Kanye West, who was a vocal Trump supporter, in the Oval Office, although West later sought to distance himself from the White House.
During the news conference Wednesday, Trump sought to turn the tables on his questioners after Yamiche Alcindor, a White House correspondent for the PBS NewsHour who is black, asked if he had emboldened white nationalists on the campaign trail with his rhetoric.
"I don't know why you'd say that. That's such a racist question," Trump said, asserting that he has the highest job approval ratings of his presidency among African Americans. He appears to be basing that on a pair of dubious polls from conservative-leaning outlets, whose findings have conflicted with other polls. Trump twice more called Alcindor's question "racist."
On Friday, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas, called Alcindor, Ryan and Phillip three of the best White House reporters and, in a tweet, said that "dismissing them or their questions as dumb, racist or stupid says more about @realDonaldTrump and his #dogwhistle racism than it does about these fine women."
Eddie Glaude Jr., chairman of the African American studies department at Princeton University, said Trump's language was not a dog whistle because "it is not subtle." He compared Trump's attacks on the intelligence of black public figures to "The Bell Curve," a widely disparaged 1994 book that connected intelligence to race.
"He does it over and over again," Glaude said. "It's important for us not just to reduce it to Trump just being transactional and understand this as a central part of who he is."
Rihanna music publisher removes her songs from Trump campaign license | TheHill
Pop star Rihanna won a legal victory over President Trump Donald John TrumpEx-White House counsel interviewed Whitaker about joining Trump's legal team: report Flake slams Trump for doubting Arizona vote count: No evidence of 'electoral corruption' Comey talked about sensitive FBI matters on personal email: report MORE this week after her performing rights company Broadcast Music Inc., (BMI) informed the Trump campaign that it can no longer use her music at events.
BMI removed Rihanna's music from the blanket ''political entities license'' agreement which previously gave Trump's campaign the right to play Rihanna songs during his campaign events and rallies, the Los Angeles Times reported Friday.
''BMI has received a communication from Robyn Fenty, professionally known as 'Rihanna,' objecting to the Trump Campaign's use of Rihanna's musical works,'' BMI said in a Nov. 6 letter obtained by the Times.
''As such '... this letter serves as notice that Rihanna's musical works are excluded from the [political entities] Agreement, and any performance of Rihanna's musical works by the Trump Campaign from this date forward is not authorized by BMI.''
The letter, addressed to senior members of Trump's campaign, comes days after the singer vowed that her songs would no longer be played at Trump's ''tragic rallies.''
Rihanna first became aware that her hit song ''Don't Stop the Music'' was playing before a Trump rally in Tallahassee, Fla., last week.
Washington Post correspondent Philip Rucker tweeted that Rihanna's song was ''blaring'' in the stadium and that Trump aides were tossing free T-shirts into the crowd like they were at a baseball game.
''Not for much longer,'' Rihanna responded on Twitter. ''Me nor my people would ever be at or around one of those tragic rallies.''
Not for much longer...me nor my people would ever be at or around one of those tragic rallies, so thanks for the heads up philip! https://t.co/dRgRi06GrJ
'-- Rihanna (@rihanna) November 4, 2018When the same song was played again during another rally in Chattanooga, Tenn., her legal team sent Trump an official cease-and-desist letter.
''As you are or should be aware, Ms. Fenty has not provided her consent to Mr. Trump to use her music. Such use is therefore improper,'' the letter obtained by Rolling Stone read.
Rihanna is an outspoken Democratic supporter who endorsed Andrew Gillum ahead of Florida's contentious gubernatorial race.
She's not the first musician who has fought back against Trump for using their songs during his political rallies.
Pharrell Williams reportedly sent Trump a cease-and-desist warning after his song "Happy" was played at a rally just hours after the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting.
Guns N' Roses frontman Axl Rose called out the president for playing their music even after the band formally requested that he stop .
"Unfortunately the Trump campaign is using loopholes in the various venues' blanket performance licenses which were not intended for such craven political purposes, without the songwriters' consent," Rose wrote on Twitter. "Can u say 'shitbags?!'''
Other musicians include Aerosmith's Steven Tyler, Twisted Sister, Elton John and members of Prince's estate .
PP Ad target audience? Black child? 501c(4) is lobbying arm
I gave up my smartphone and I've never felt so free - The Globe and Mail
Smartphones, if you think about it, are a little bit like wearing underwear. You're certainly free to walk through life without them, but people might think you're crazy. So, consider me crazy, because I've given mine up. (The smartphone, not the briefs.)
In August, I purchased a Nokia 8110, an updated release of the banana-shaped Matrix phone that was first released in 1996. It texts! It calls! It has predictive text! Neo would be proud.
''Okay,'' you're asking. ''Why?''
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A few reasons. Firstly, my trusty iPhone 5C '' which I used for roughly four years, a lifetime in our world of planned obsolescence '' is pretty much dead. May it gather dust in peace.
Like any smartphone, my 5C was great for checking e-mails, Twitter, and the occasional Facebook message. It was a little too great at these actions, which brings me to my second reason for the switch: My use of the thing quickly evolved to something akin to a glorified fidget spinner. Pulling down on feeds that are already up-to-date is addictive. It felt unhealthy.
So I bought a dumb phone '' or, more accurately, a ''feature phone,'' a basic mobile device that lacks ''smart'' technology '' not wanting to spend a small fortune on a luxury product that felt more like a social obligation than actual retail therapy. (The going rate on the latest iPhone is, at time of writing, slightly more than $1,300.)
Given the reactions my 8110 has generated (''Is that a phone?''), it would seem I am not alone in feeling overwhelmed by smartphone culture. This isn't surprising, naturally; paradigm shifts are often exhausting. But whether I'm on a bus or out with friends at a bar, I can't use my new phone without someone commenting, laughing or immediately volunteering their own frustrations with compulsive smartphone use (and how they'd love to quit cold turkey, but it's ''just so important for [work, family, fantasy football]).''
Totally fair, and I get it. But stepping away from hyperconnectivity has allowed me to see this new normal as a sort of social contract.
The primary stipulation? The end user is required to purchase and consume; participate and respond.
Without even getting into the matter of personal privacy, the expectations of smartphone culture have material forfeits. Take the gig economy's trend of downloading operational costs onto its underemployed workers: Job applications will mention if you need a driver's licence, but not if you'll need to bring your own smartphone to participate in office Slack channels, post pictures of a corporate event to Instagram or answer urgent e-mails at midnight.
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In the social world, the extensions of this always-on culture have led to, mostly, some interesting complications '' while simultaneously placing the responsibility of keeping up with people squarely on said end user. In other words, me.
My family, for instance, communicates things like career updates and photos of unfortunate typos via group chat, a basic function my phone is unequipped to parse. I used to be involved in many of these types of conversations '' ranging from work matters to enjoyable banter '' but I've since had to drop out of them all entirely, telling people to reach out directly if need be. While I've always been the ''caller'' in my social circles, my absence from chat groups means I'm now catching up over the phone, making firmer plans and asking more questions when I'm out with others.
Over all, is this a good thing? Without any apps sending push notifications and only direct text messages coming in, the number of times my phone buzzes each day has plummeted. I may not be privy to my friends' spicy memes, but my attention span has improved proportionately.
At least, that's what my partner tells me. On car trips, where she's often the driver, I used to stick my nose in my smartphone while she focused on the highway. These days, I'm heads-up with her, navigating, talking and otherwise participating. Ditto for watching movies, doing work and anything else that used to demand concentration. Funny how disconnecting even somewhat can otherwise improve human connectivity.
Small social snags do continue to present themselves. I'm simply unable to assist with calling Ubers and Lyfts, ordering takeout, ''Can you check the weather for me?'' and other digital ''favours.''
Don't get me wrong: I'd love to Google that for you. Trust me, I'll get back to you in a respectable amount of time. But if immediacy is what's needed, forgive me in advance: I'm going to have to breach that particular section of the social contract.
Young couples are sharing fingerprints to unlock each other's phones
A Chinese couple use their smartphones in a street in Beijing on May 29, 2016.
For young couples, major relationship milestones used to look something like a borrowed letterman jacket or a shiny key to an apartment '-- a show of trust and commitment, and a means to say, what's mine is yours.
Younger millennials and Gen Z teens, more tech-savvy and less privacy-keen than generations before, have kept the sentiment, but replaced lending their letterman jacket with swapping biometric passwords like a fingerprint or facial recognition ID to access their partner's phone.
As smartphones like those made by Apple and Google increasingly move toward biometric access, younger users lean on the convenience of a single tap or look, over traditional passcodes. And with the option to store multiple fingerprints or facial appearances, couples are lending a finger for easing unlocking of their significant other's device.
"I think that inherently, people desire to share themselves and to be known. Sharing your phone fingerprints demonstrates trust between two people, and that you are OK with being known by that person, and that they're OK with you knowing them too," said Emma Clarke, a 24-year-old living in New York City who's previously swapped fingerprint biometrics with a boyfriend to access his phone.
"People like having a special connection with someone that others don't have and showing it off. It's the modern version of putting your boyfriend in your top friends on MySpace," Clarke said.
Most of the young couples I talked to noted the convenience of having one-tap access to a significant other's phone. Switch the song while she's driving, check the recipe while his hands are busy cooking. Her phone has apps his doesn't.
Still, sharing a numerical code could grant access for those occasions, which is what several 30-plus-year-old couples told me. Several Gen Xers or Baby Boomers I asked hadn't ever considered swapping fingerprints, and weren't easily convinced by a list of conveniences.
Storing a partner's biometric data seems to be a uniquely younger compulsion, and likely tied to the typical millennial nonchalance around cybersecurity that comes with a digital childhood and regular headlines of data breaches. Younger generations are more used to, even more comfortable with, the risk of having sensitive information stolen, so sharing an otherwise strong security metric doesn't register as risky.
Privacy and intimacyIn the digital age, sharing a biometric password '-- or a social media password, for example '-- is something akin to sharing finances with a partner, according to sex and relationship expert Tammy Nelson.
"The whole idea of sharing levels of technology, sharing levels of passwords, levels of transparency on their phone, their social media," Nelson said, "our privacy has become about intimacy."
Nelson said storing a partner's fingerprint shouldn't be taken lightly. A password can be changed, she said, but a biometric is harder to replace.
"It's a little bit of the naivete that, this is going to last forever, nothing is ever going to go wrong, we're always going to respect each other's space," she said. "What you think is private and secret, the other person probably has a much different idea, but you assume you mean the same thing, and that's the beginning of the betrayal."
The primary risk in sharing biometric access, according to cybersecurity expert and former prosecutor Patrick Doherty, is whether the person you trust with access could later become untrustworthy.
In the event of a falling out, a partner with device access could steal information or act publicly online on your behalf '-- post on social media or send a damaging email, for example. There's also recent legal precedent that says law enforcement can compel someone to unlock a smartphone with a biometric, said Doherty, associate managing director at cybersecurity advisory firm K2 Intelligence.
"If they do have a biometric that is contained or provides access to an account or device that may be linked with criminality ... I would see instances where you would be able to compel a spouse," Doherty said. "I think it certainly gives law enforcement more individuals to look for."
Compromised securityGoogle smartphones and older iPhones that still feature the Touch ID system allow users to store up to five fingerprints. Newer iPhones do away with Touch ID in favor of facial recognition, but even Apple's Face ID now allows for an "alternate appearance" on the most recent operating system.
Apple's support pages for Face ID and Touch ID don't explicitly caution against sharing biometric access. Google's Pixel support page does, but in relatively mild terms, saying only "anyone whose fingerprints you add will be able to unlock your device and authorize purchases with your account" and noting that secondary users should store their fingerprints as part of a separate user profile.
It's safest to keep your fingerprints close, though, according to Alan Brill, senior managing director for cyber risk at Kroll Experts.
Fingerprint scanners like Apple's Touch ID don't match an image of the fingerprint to a previously taken image, Brill said. Instead, they unlock a device by using an algorithm to translate the image into a string of characters, and match the characters to a previous translation.
Similar devices by the same company typically use the same algorithm, Brill said, and so the act of scanning your fingerprint across multiple devices is similar to entering the same password across multiple websites around the web '-- a practice long denounced by security experts for its heightened risk of breach.
"It doesn't take long until you run out of fingers. So as we go to more and more biometrics, it becomes increasingly vital that the technological infrastructure behind that biometric '-- how it's stored, how it's transmitted, how it's used '-- has to be very, very secure," Brill said.
Amazon Echo Recordings Could Contain Evidence For Double-Murder Trial CBS Boston
November 9, 2018 at 3:01 pmFARMINGTON, New Hampshire (CBS) '-- A New Hampshire judge has ''directed Amazon.com to produce'' any recordings an Amazon Echo may have because it could contain evidence of a January 2017 double-murder. Prosecutors are looking for the two days worth of recording from the Echo in a Meaderboro Road, Farmington home where 47-year-old Christine Sullivan and 32-year-old Jenna Pellegrini were found dead.
The information from the Echo would also include if any cellphones were paired with it.
According to prosecutors, sometime between January 27 and 29, 2017, Sullivan and Pellegrini were murdered by 36-year-old Timothy Verrill. He was charged with two counts of first-degree murder, along with other charges, and is in jail waiting for his trial in May 2019.
Timothy Verrill (WBZ-TV)
''Investigators believe Sullivan was attacked in the kitchen of 979 Meaderboro Road where the Echo was located, and prosecutors believe there is probable cause to believe there is evidence on the Echo, such as audio recordings of the attack and events that followed it,'' said court documents.
The bodies of Sullivan and Pellegrini were found under the porch of the home with stab wounds and blunt force trauma, according to the Medical Examiner's Office.
A home in Farmington where two women were found dead. (WBZ-TV)
Amazon's Echo device has a voice-activated feature called Alexa. ''As state prosecutors outline in their motion, Alexa listens for 'wake-up words,' from users want it to play music, dim household lights or provide the weather forecast. When a wake-up word is detected, 'the device begins audio recording through its integrated microphones, including recording the fraction of a second of audio before the wake-up words,' the attorney general's office prosecutors stated. The Echo would also maintain records of the devices connected that were paired with it.''
The Echo had been taken from the kitchen while the home was initially searched. Those recordings are saved until they are manually deleted.
Amazon must give up Echo recordings in double murder case, judge rules | Ars Technica
Alexa: what did you hear? '-- New Hampshire judge orders data handover in 2017 stabbing case. Cyrus Farivar - Nov 10, 2018 12:35 pm UTC
Enlarge / Close-up of the base of an Amazon Echo smart speaker using the Alexa service, with Amazon logo visible, on a light wooden surface in San Ramon, California, May 31, 2018.
On Friday, a local judge in New Hampshire ordered Amazon to hand over Echo recordings made the day a Farmington couple was murdered at its home.
According to local media accounts, Strafford County Superior Court Presiding Justice Steven M. Houran compelled Amazon to disclose not only the audio files but any associated data'--such as what phones were paired to the smart speaker'--that may be connected to the January 2017 murder of Christine Sullivan and Jenna Pellegrini.
Prosecutors say the women were murdered by Timothy Verrill, who is due to stand trial in May 2019. Verrill has pleaded not guilty. Authorities have previously noted that the bodies of the women were found stabbed to death under a tarp, with a knife buried nearby.
"Investigators believe Sullivan was attacked in the kitchen of 979 Meaderboro Road where the Echo was located, and prosecutors believe there is probable cause to believe there is evidence on the Echo, such as audio recordings of the attack and events that followed it," CBS Boston reported, citing court documents.
Police seized the Echo into evidence during an initial search of the murder scene.
Amazon did not immediately respond to Ars' request for comment on Saturday morning, but a spokesperson told the Associated Press that it would not give up any data "without a valid and binding legal demand properly served on us."
A similar situation arose in an Arkansas murder case in 2017. Initially, Amazon had refused to disclose the relevant data and filed a motion to quash the warrant.
"Amazon does not seek to obstruct any lawful investigation but rather seeks to protect the privacy rights of its customers when the government is seeking their data from Amazon, especially when that data may include expressive content protected by the First Amendment," company lawyers wrote at the time.
However, Amazon ultimately did comply when the suspect and the owner of the Echo in the Arkansas case consented.
No More FOMO: Limiting Social Media Decreases Loneliness and Depression | Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology
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New study claims Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat are linked to depression - MarketWatch
Spending too much time on ''social media'' sites like Facebook is making people more than just miserable. It may also be making them depressed.
A new study conducted by psychologists at the University of Pennsylvania has shown '-- for the first time '-- a causal link between time spent on social media and depression and loneliness, the researchers said.
It concluded that those who drastically cut back their use of sites like Facebook, Instagram FB, -1.97% and Snapchat SNAP, -3.28% often saw a marked improvement in their mood and in how they felt about their lives.
Don't miss: Nearly half of Americans report feeling alone
''It was striking,'' says Melissa Hunt, psychology professor at University of Pennsylvania, who led the study. ''What we found over the course of three weeks was that rates of depression and loneliness went down significantly for people who limited their (social media) use.''
Many of those who began the study with moderate clinical depression finished just a few weeks later with very mild symptoms, she says.
The study, ''No More FOMO: Limiting Social Media Decreases Loneliness and Depression,'' was conducted by Melissa Hunt, Rachel Marx, Courtney Lipson and Jordyn Young, is being published by the peer-reviewed Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology.
For the study, Hunt and her team studied 143 undergraduates at the University of Pennsylvania over a number of weeks. They tested their mood and sense of well-being using seven different established scales. Half of the participants carried on using social media sites as normal. (Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat did not respond to request for comment.)
The other half were restricted to ten minutes per day for each of the three sites studied: Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat, the most popular sites for the age group. (Use was tracked through regular screen shots from the participants' phones showing battery data.)
Net result: Those who cut back on social media use saw ''clinically significant'' falls in depression and in loneliness over the course of the study. Their rates of both measures fell sharply, while those among the so-called ''control'' group, who did not change their behavior, saw no improvement.
This isn't the first study to find a link between social media use, on the one hand, and depression and loneliness on the other. But previous studies have mainly just shown there is a correlation, and the researchers allege that this shows a ''causal connection.''
It's possible '-- even likely '-- that lonely and depressed people use sites like Facebook more because they are seeking social connections, says Hunt. The new study suggests that Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat aren't just popular with the lonely and depressed: They're also making people more lonely, and more depressed.
Why does social media make so many people feel bad? The study didn't analyze this, but Hunt offers two explanations. The first is ''downward social comparison.'' You read your friends' timelines. They're deliberately putting on a show to make their lives look wonderful. The result: ''You're more likely to think your life sucks in comparison,'' says Hunt. The second reason: FOMO, or Fear of Missing Out.
Also see: Lonely people share too much on Facebook
Social media sites have become such an integral part of the modern world that many people simply can't cut them out altogether, Hunt says. That's why the study focused just on cutting back. It's significant that restricting use to ten minutes per site per day helped those with depression so much. You don't have to give it up altogether to feel better.
The main caveat is that the study was restricted to undergraduates. Whether the same sites affect older groups, who may be less susceptible to social pressure, is another matter for another day.
Correlation and causation are two issues that researchers grapple with and typically only make claims for the former. In an increasingly polarized and heated political climate, for example,Twitter TWTR, -0.29% may be making older Americans miserable and angry '-- or angry Americans may use Twitter.
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The Big Switch
Tricky Dick and The Man in Black - no different from now. Okie from Muskogee and Welfare Cadillac-Southern strategy
"What is Truth"
Color Classrooms from producer Rachel
Hi Adam and John, my daughter goes to a preschool that gives color names
to the classrooms. This year she was entering the White Room, but then we
got an email from the administration that they no longer thought "white"
an appropriate color name, given the school's efforts at inclusion and
The room had been called "white" for like 20 years.
So ridiculously dumb. They changed it to a different color.
Humboldt University Whiteness Confirmed
I listen to No Agenda
regularly and, to be upfront, I am a douche-bag having never donated. That
being said feel free to ignore this email if you wish. I also work at Humboldt
State University and as such received the same email (several times) about
Whiteness and Microaggressions Training that you read in show 1085 (the sender
Julie Tucker is a very nice woman by the way). I can assure John that it is not
a hoax. The topic is taken very seriously at HSU and, at least in my
experience, the average student, faculty, staff member will hear conversations
about whiteness on a daily basis. It has always seemed surreal to me. I believe
these to be decent people with good intentions, but they have bought into the
idea of negative whiteness hook line and sinker to the point where you can
almost see the guilt on their faces. Obviously to keep my job I shut up and
keep my head down as much as possible, but it is getting very strange. I am
a little paranoid and so chose not to write from my HSU email address, and
would appreciate remaining anonymous. Here is a link to the official notice
page for the training:
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez says she can't afford apartment in DC until she receives congressional salary | Fox News
Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, who became the youngest woman elected to Congress Tuesday, said she cannot afford to rent an apartment in Washington, D.C., until her congressional salary kicks in.
Ocasio-Cortez, 29, made national headlines after she defeated 10-term Rep. Joe Crowley in New York's June primary, and will now represent the state's 14th Congressional District. She told The New York Times that the transition period from now until she starts her job ''will be very unusual, because I can't really take a salary.''
''I have three months without a salary before I'm a member of Congress. So, how do I get an apartment? Those little things are very real,'' Ocasio-Cortez told The New York Times.
OCASIO-CORTEZ WINS HOUSE SEAT, BECOMING YOUNGEST WOMAN ELECTED TO CONGRESS
She told the paper she saved up before she left her job as a bartender at a New York City restaurant.
''We're kind of just dealing with the logistics of it day by day, but I've really been just kind of squirreling away and then hoping that gets me to January,'' she said.
After the story gained traction, Ocasio-Cortez tweeted about her apartment situation saying she was ''working it out.''
OCASIO-CORTEZ CALLS QUESTION ABOUT HOW TO PAY FOR MEDICARE FOR ALL 'PUZZLING'
''There are many little ways in which our electoral system isn't ever designed [nor prepared] for working-class people to lead,'' she tweeted. ''This is one of them [don't worry by the way '' we're working it out!]''
She will make $174,000 a year as a member of Congress. A one-room bedroom apartment in Washington, D.C., on average, goes for about $2,170 a month, a report by Zumper stated.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Ocasio-Cortez complains about not getting Congressional paycheck yet: 'How do I get an apartment?' - The American MirrorThe American Mirror
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez apparently believes the ''electoral system'' is unfair because she can't receive her congressional salary until she's actually sworn in as a member of Congress.
On Thursday, the 29-year-old socialist spoke with The New York Times about her election victory on Tuesday.
But rather than discuss her ideas for Congress, Ocasio-Cortez complained about not being able to afford an apartment in Washington, D.C.
Given that she will not be sworn in as a member of Congress until January, the Democratic socialist complained about not receiving her congressional salary for another three months.
''I have three months without a salary before I'm a member of Congress, so how do I get an apartment?'' Ocasio-Cortez said. ''Those little things are very real.''
Ocasio-Cortez said she and her ''partner'' have been saving money since her days as a bartender in New York, but decried that it wasn't enough to get her an apartment in D.C.
''We're kind of just dealing with the logistics of it day by day,'' Ocasio-Cortez said. ''I've really been just kind of squirreling away and then hoping that gets me to January.''
Despite Ocasio-Cortez telling the Times that she ''can't really take a salary,'' filings by the Federal Election Commission indicate that she did take at least one ''payroll'' check as a candidate this election cycle.
The socialist darling also tweeted about her interview with the Times, and further elaborated her bizarre position that the ''electoral system'' is unfair because she cannot receive her congressional salary until she's actually sworn in as a member of Congress.
There are many little ways in which our electoral system isn't even designed (nor prepared) for working-class people to lead.
This is one of them (don't worry btw '' we're working it out!) '¬¸ https://t.co/PEQ5ccSDSO
'-- Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@Ocasio2018) November 8, 2018
The electoral system has absolutely nothing to do with Ocasio-Cortez's apparent financial struggles. While many will find it mind-boggling that she doesn't know that, it's hardly the first time she has made a bizarre statement.
On Tuesday night, Ocasio-Cortez thanked every ''Dreamer'' for her election victory and accuses Immigration Customs and Enforcement of committing ''humans rights violations.''
''Words cannot express my gratitude to every organizer, every small-dollar donor, every working parent and Dreamer who helped make this movement happen. And that's exactly what this is, not a campaign or an Election Day but a movement'... for social, economic and racial justice,'' she added, getting very animated while galvanizing her far-left supporters.
''We launched this campaign because no one was clearly and authentically talking about issues like the corrupting role of money in politics. Like the disturbing human rights violations being committed by ICE,'' Ocasio-Cortez shouted to the crowd while waving her arms. ''By the fact that no one was giving a voice to the idea, to the notion that an entire generation is graduating with crippling loads of student loans debt that's a ticking time bomb for our economy.''
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez ofrece su primer discurso tras ser elegida como la mujer ms joven a la Cmara de Representantes. pic.twitter.com/JK2daERukf
'-- Univision Noticias (@UniNoticias) November 7, 2018
Earlier this week, the socialist offered a bizarre response when asked how American taxpayers would pay for the multi-billion dollar ''Medicare for all'' plan that she and other far-left Democrats support.
''You just'... pay for it,'' she said with a weird pause.
Recent studies have shown that the ''Medicare for all'' plan would increase government health care spending by $32.6 trillion over 10 years.
Want to learn more about our fight for Medicare for All, student loan cancellation, embracing our immigrant communities & more?
Check out our stoop interview w/ Jorge Ramos on @ThisIsAmerica: https://t.co/BjZvWBFODb pic.twitter.com/ORV0DTxxWh
'-- Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@Ocasio2018) November 2, 2018
Later in that same interview, Ocasio-Cortez told host Jorge Ramos that it's a ''no-brainer'' that President Donald Trump should be impeached.
''I mean, yeah. To me, it's a no-brainer,'' Ocasio-Cortez said, without providing any evidence that the president broke the law.
Last week, Ocasio-Cortez sent out a bizarre email demanding Democrats ''push back'' against Republicans and Trump, who she referred to as ''cold-hearted monsters.''
Prior to that, Ocasio-Cortez told a small crowd that global warming is an ''existential threat'' similar to Nazism. With no self-awareness at all, she claimed the plan to defeat ''global warming'' should be the same one used to defeat Adolf Hitler.
The Democratic darling said her plan for Congress will be to divide people; or, as she put it, ''segmenting'' them.
And if her congressional salary isn't enough, she's already hinted at a possible presidential run in the future.
Artists, intellectuals call for 'European Republic'
BERLIN (AP) '-- Artists and intellectuals across Europe are calling for the founding of a continentwide republic to replace its many nation states.
Activists planned to proclaim a ''European Republic'' in dozens of cities at 4 p.m. (1500 GMT) Saturday, almost exactly 100 years after the end of World War I.
The event is being organized by a group calling itself the European Balcony Project. Its listed supporters include political scientists, philosophers and writers such as Austrian literature Nobel prize laureate Elfriede Jelinek.
A manifesto on the group's website declares that ''the sovereignty of states is hereby replaced by the sovereignty of citizens.''
The European Balcony Project: https://europeanbalconyproject.eu
War on Plastic!
WAR ON PLASTIC MEETS WAR ON CREDIT CARDS-What's Really Behind All the Plastic Bans? - The Organic Prepper
Why are straws the new ''assault weapon'' in California? Why is the globe simultaneously banning straws and other single-use plastics? It sounds good, right'...just cleaning up the environment for the future of the children.
But could there be a darker, more menacing reason for the sudden explosion of anti-plastic news and simultaneous bans?
Why would the tide suddenly turn against the one thing we were promised was a great new innovation? We've been drowning in plastics since birth and in a matter of weeks, every news station is bludgeoning us with what horrible consumers we are to use plastics.
''Green guilt'' and penalties are being pushed on consumers in the new wave of eco-insanity. A single-use plastics ban was just approved by the European Parliament.
Have you seen the news? Here are some stats on single use plastic bans.
These states, international cities, and countries have plastic bag bans.
Thailand as of 2021
Taiwan '' all single use plastics by 2030
New Delhi '' all single use plastics
UK '' taxes
Chile '' coastal cities
South Australia and Australian supermarkets
Zimbabwe '' polystyrene (like Styrofoam)
New Jersey '' Pending, and one of the strictest bills
These American cities have plastic bag bans.
Many of these also impose taxes or fines for either using plastic bags or even for using reusable bags or paper bags. So the consumer (or retailer in some cases) is further penalized. (source)
Note: Pretty much every city in California has a plastic bag ban. And also Washington, D.C.
BISBEE AZANCHORAGE AKUNALASKA AKPALMER AKWASILLA AKCORDOVA AKHOOPER BAY AKBETHEL AKCRESTED BUTTE COAVON CONEDERLAND COBRECKENRIDGE COBOULDER COASPEN COCARBONDALE COTELLURIDE COGREENWICH CTWESTPORT CTWASHINGTON DCCORAL GABLES FLOAHU HIOAHU HIHAWAII COUNTY HIHONOLULU HIMAUI COUNTY HIKAUAI COUNTY HIMARSHALL COUNTY IAOAK PARK ILCHICAGO ILEVANSTON ILDARTMOUTH MAWILMINGTON MAHAVERHILL MAANDOVER MALOWELL MADANVERS MAWESTFORD MAGLOUCESTER MAHOPKINTON MABELMONT MABOSTON MACOHASSET MAWINCHESTER MAMARSHFIELD MAWESTBOROUGH MASWAMPSCOTT MATOPSFIELD MAWAYLAND MAWAKEFIELD MAMELROSE MASOUTH HADLEY MASUDBURY MADALTON MAYARMOUTH MAARLINGTON MASTOCKBRIDGE MABOURNE MAOAK BLUFFS MAFRAMINGHAM MAEDGARTOWN MAATHOL MASANDWICH MAIPSWICH MADENNIS MABEDFORD MAPLYMOUTH MANATICK MAWATERTOWN MASHREWSBURY MALENNOX MALEE MAADAMS MAAMHERST MACHILMARK MAAQUINNAH MAWEST TISBURY MATISBURY MASALEM MAWELLESLY MABARNSTABLE MASOMERVILLE MAFALMOUTH MAHAMILTON MAHARWICH MACAMBRIDGE MATRURO MABRIDGEWATER MANORTHAMPTON MACONCORD MACHATHAM MAWELLFLEET MAWILLIAMSTOWN MANEWTON MAMARBLEHEAD MAPROVINCETOWN MANEWBURYPORT MAGREAT BARRINGTON MAMANCHESTER MABROOKLINE MAHARFORD MDABERDEEN MDTAKOMA PARK MDMONTGOMERY COUNTY MDCHESTERTOWN MDROCKLAND MEMANCHESTER MEBLUE HILL MEBATH MEBELFAST MECAPE ELIZABETH MEBRUNSWICK METOPSHAM MESACO MEFREEPORT MEKENNEBUNK MEFALMOUTH MEYORK MESOUTH PORTLAND MEPORTLAND MEWASHTENAW COUNTY MIHYDE COUNTY NCDARE COUNTY NCCURRITUCK COUNTY NCJERSEY CITY NJBELMAR NJBRIGANTINE BEACH NJHOBOKEN NJBRADLEY BEACH NJSTAFFORD TOWNSHIP NJATLANTIC COUNTY NJTEANECK NJMONMOUTH BEACH NJLONG BEACH NJPOINT PLEASANT BEACH NJLONGPORT NJSILVER CITY NMSANTA FE NMBEDFORD NYLEWISBORO NYSEA CLIFF NYSUFFOLK COUNTY NYLONG BEACH NYNEW CASTLE NYNEW YORK CITY NYPATCHOGUE VILLAGE NYSAG HARBOR NYSOUTHAMPTON NYNEW PALTZ VILLAGE NYHASTINGS ON HUDSON NYLARCHMONT NYMAMARONECK NYRYE NYEAST HAMPTON NYULSTER COUNTY NYMILWAUKIE ORMANZANITA ORMCMINNVILLE ORHOOD RIVER ORFOREST GROVE ORASHLAND OREUGENE ORCORVALLIS ORPORTLAND ORPROVIDENCE RINORTH KINGSTOWN RIJAMESTOWN RINEW SHOREHAM RINEWPORT RIMIDDLETOWN RIBARRINGTON RIMOUNT PLEASANT SCBEAUFORT COUNTY SCSURFSIDE BEACH SCFOLLY BEACH SCISLE OF PALMS SCBROWNSVILLE TXEAGLE PASS TXPORT ARANSAS '' SUSPENDED TXLAREDO TXKERMIT TXSUNSET VALLEY TXFREER TXAUSTIN TXLAGUNA VISTA TXSOUTH PADRE ISLAND TXFORT STOCKTON TXMOAB UTPARK CITY UTPARK CITY UTBRATTLEBORO VTKENMORE WALA CONNER WAPORT ANGELES WATACOMA WAFRIDAY HARBOR WASAN JUAN COUNTY WATUMWATER WATHURSTON COUNTY WAOLYMPIA WALACEY WAMERCER ISLAND WASHORELINE WAISSAQUAH WAMUKILTEO WAPORT TOWNSEND WABAINBRIDGE ISLAND WABELLINGHAM WASEATTLE WAEDMONDS WAThese cities, states, and countries have banned straws.
These stats are accurate as of June 2018:
New York City '' Pending
New Jersey '' Pending, and one of the strictest bills
Hawaii '' Pending
California state '' Pending
California: Alameda, Carmel, San Luis Obispo, Davis, Malibu, Manhattan Beach, Oakland, Richmond, and Berkeley
Washington: Seattle and Edmonds
New Jersey: Monmouth Beach
Florida: Miami Beach and Fort Myers (source)
France '' plates, cups and cutlery by 2020
These companies have banned straws.
Starbucks '' replacing straws with recyclable plastic lids for all cold beverages
Hyatt '' plastic straws only available by request
University of Portland campus
London City Airport
Ryanair '' to be ''plastic free'' by 2023
Quite an impressive list, wouldn't you say?
But let's add to that the sudden explosion of news and studies that finally shows the harmful effects of plastics that were likely known all along.
What we know about the dangers of plastic
Don't get me wrong '' plastics are truly horrible, they always were. But who's going after the giant chemical companies creating them? Anyway'...
Plastic breaks down into microplastics
Microplastics break down into nanoplastics
Nanoplastics are now in food, water, agriculture, air, and bottled water
Microplastics are being swallowed in food via the air
Mosquitoes eat plastic and it gets passed up the food chain
Dead whales are found loaded with plastic waste
The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is worse than previously thought with 88,000 tons of waste and is twice the size of Texas
BPA exposure happens through skin and digestion from plastics and alters reproductive health
So do BPS and other ''BPA-Free'' materials
But why now?
My question is this: how did all these media, companies, cities, states and countries around the globe know to perform the same exact legislation and negative reports on plastic at the same exact time?
Just something to think about.
Like a lot of people, I'm a conscientious person with a massive guilt complex. So it's easy for the barrage of news stories to leave someone shaking in the fetal position about the future of the earth. While the powers-that-shouldn't-be are causing division both abroad and in the homeland, they are also attempting to meld together a united front from all those smashed-up, divided pieces.
A psychopathic system can gain power from causing division among people but also within the individual himself.
Not only are the powers-that-be expert alchemists who leave no stone unturned, but also they are probably 40 steps ahead of us. They are Pygmalion and we are their clay, or so they think.
What is this great cause that would bring the whole world together in a big globalism blob?
Earth. Global Warming. Land. Water. Population. Agenda 21.
If I had a dollar for every headline I come across every single day about the urgent need to ban consumer products, stop eating so much, don't eat meat, reduce the population, etc, etc'...then I swear I'd never have to work again.
It's that obnoxious. What's sad is most of the population internalizes this bullying instead of calling out the agenda. We are either being indoctrinated through comedic entertainment or watching stone faces and pursed lips wag their fingers at us bad humans.
But there's something even more sinister than making the world one under the banner of Eco-Unfriendliness'...
Environmentalism is just a vehicle for the bigger agenda. The anti-plastics crusade is an avenue to pave the way for'...
Cashless societies and microchip implantation.
Sure, it sounded like a big conspiracy in years past. But now it's a reality. Workers in other countries are using microchips to clock-in. How convenient. People in Sweden are lining up to get them implanted.
What better way to usher in more of that than through the demonization of plastics. After all, the consumer is the one being blamed, not the manufacturers. And what do consumers have a lot of? Plastic. Plastic and debt. Purses and wallets today are stuffed to the brim with credit cards, membership cards, and store cards.
It's only a matter of time before the collective media zeroes in on them. Mark my words. Heck, if straws are the big blight on the earth, then credit cards all the more. Straws are served in restaurants, but credit cards come in the mail when you don't even want them. Every business wants you on their membership card system.
I could say so much more about how this and other agendas are converging to make the microchip implementation happen, but I've rambled on enough for one day. The other agendas are also geared to this goal.
What do you think of my speculation?
Do you agree that the sudden anti-plastic shift could signal the shoo-in of microchips and a cashless society? Why or why not?
credit cards are environmentally uinfriendly plastic - Google Search
Is cash better for the environment than a credit card?https://slate.com/.../is-cash-better-for-the-environment-than-a-credit-card.htmlApr 14, 2009 ...Credit cards are made out of plastic, which I know I'm supposed to. ... What's themost environmentally friendly way to spend my money'--cash or credit card ...
recycling programs and can produce harmful dioxins if incinerated, ...
Are credit cards recyclable? It's complicated - CreditCards.comhttps://www.creditcards.com/credit-card.../are-credit-cards-recyclable.phpNov 8, 2017 ... Their material and the data they hold makes them pretty earth-unfriendly ...Unfortunately, the plastic card's troublesome material, the potential fraud ... that
the environmental impact of card issuers trying to address card ...
Retailers seek 'green' alternative to plastic gift cards - latimesarticles.latimes.com/2013/dec/.../la-fi-gift-card-pollution-20131223Dec 22, 2013 ... Retailers seek 'green' alternative to plastic gift cards ... in landfills along with worn-out hotel key cards, credit cards and the like. ... a plastic that contains pollutants
that are harmful to the environment and is slow to decompose.
Recycled Plastic Cards and Other Eco Friendly Solutionshttps://plastekcards.com/plastic-cards/...plastic-cards/environmentally-friendly -plastic-card-manufacturing/May 28, 2009 ... Find out about different recycled plastic card materials, and eco friendly solutions.... has been wil dly used for leading plastic card retailers and credit cards. ...
PETG cards can be recycled without creating any harmful gases or ...
Biodegradable Debit Or Credit Cards Launched By This Bank To ...https://swachhindia.ndtv.com/biodegradable-debit-or-credit-cards-launched- by-this-bank-to-check-plastic-pollution-that-is-choking-the-planet-8...Jun 14, 2017 ... The look and feel of the cards are same as the regular plastic credit card, but, hasa positive impact on the environment. ... Talking about more benefits, these cards
do not release carbon, methane or any other harmful ...
Plastic Cards Zero Waste Box ½ TerraCyclehttps://www.terracycle.com/en-US/zero_waste.../plastic-cardsTerraCycle has created a zero waste solution for plastic cards. ... Expired,discarded plastic cards such IDs, licenses, credit cards, business cards, gift cards
, key cards ... We will also not accept household hazardous waste such as lithium
ion ... If you represent an eco-curious company, please visit the "Work with us"
Environmental | Plastic Card Serviceshttps://www.plastic-card-services.co.uk/environmental/As one of the first card manufacturers in Europe to use both Eco degradable ...reduces emissions or harmful compounds released into the atmosphere.
Searches related to credit cards are environmentally unfriendly plastic
SoCal Country Club Shooter
Police Met With "Irate, Irrational" SoCal Mass-Shooter In April, "Didn't Feel He Warranted Psych Hold" | Zero Hedge
Update 3: More details have emerged about the shooter, 28-year-old Ian David Long, who opened fire at let off at least 30 shots from a Glock with an extended magazine.
Long, a former-marine, was dressed in all black during the shooting and eventually turned the gun on himself after police officers arrived.
Police say they have "had several contacts with Mr. Long over the years for minor offenses."
He was a victim of assault and battery in a bar in 2015. The police then confirmed that in April of this year, officers were called to Long's house: "officers went to his house, he was somewhat irate, acting a little irrationally."
The officers then called out their Crisis Intervention Team, "and mental health specialists who met with him, talked to him, and cleared him, didn't feel he was qualified to be taken under 5150."
BREAKING: CA Shooter identified -Ian David Long, 28 years old. #CaliforniaShooting #ThousandOaks pic.twitter.com/TqqUpZZrAn
'-- CajunAsian (@RiflemansCreed) November 8, 2018As a reminder, 5150 refers to the California law code for the temporary, involuntary psychiatric commitment of individuals who present a danger to themselves or others due to signs of mental illness. It has been more generally applied to people who are considered threateningly unstable or ''crazy.''
* * *
Update 2: A man interviewed by the local ABC station said that multiple friends inside Borderline had survived the Route 91 country music festival shooting at the Mandalay Bay casino in Las Vegas just over a year ago.
"A lot of my friends survived Route 91,'' he said. ''If they survived that, they will survive this.''
The Las Vegas massacre was the deadliest shooting in US history after gunman Stephen Paddock opened fire on a crowd, killing 58.
"I was at the Las Vegas Route 91 mass shooting": Man inside Southern California bar when a gunman opened fire was with "probably 50 or 60 others" who were also at the Las Vegas massacre last year. https://t.co/ggd6FHg1d4 pic.twitter.com/x3NNjaaL27
'-- CBS News (@CBSNews) November 8, 2018Ron Helus, the Ventura County Sheriff's Sgt. killed in the gunfire was set to reitre next year. He is survived by his wife and son.
"Ron was a hardworking, dedicated sheriff's sergeant. He was totally committed, he gave his all and tonight, as I told his wife, he died a hero. He went in to save lives, to save other people," said Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean.
Ventura County Sheriff's Sgt. Ron Helus. (credit: CBS)
* * *
Update 1: The suspect has been identified as 29-year-old veteran and former Marine David Ian Long, according to ABC.
* * *
As we detailed earlier, at least 13 people, including a sheriff's deputy and the suspected shooter, have been killed, while multiple others were injured during a shooting at the country western dance hall Borderline Bar & Grill in Thousand Oaks, Calif. The bar was holding a "College Country" night event when the shooter reportedly stormed the entrance, per NBC News.
Media reports claimed hundreds of people were inside the venue at the time of the shooting, which began at around 11:30 pm local time.
Thousand Oaks is situated in Ventura County about 40 miles northwest of Los Angeles.
One witness interviewed by local TV station ABC7 said that the shooting started when the gunman approached the entrance to the bar, located at 99 Rolling Oaks Drive, and shot a security guard and cashier. He then lobbed a smoke bomb inside the building as he continued to fire into the crowd.
According to a local CBS affiliate station, witnesses described the suspected gunman as a man who was wearing a trench coat and had a scarf on his face, or possibly a beard. Another described him as being dressed in "all black."
One survivor described how he threw a stool through a window and escaped during a lull in the shooting.
"We heard shots, I looked up and knew exactly what was happening. I tried to pull down as many people as I could," he said. "As soon as we heard a break in the shooting we knew he was reloading and we threw a couple of bar stools through the closest to us so we could get out."
He said the shooter entered and turned to the door counter and coat check area before eventually working his way to the bar.
"He didn't say anything, at least not that we could hear," Estron added. "Everyone was just trying to get out."
The shooter, who has been identified as a male, was reportedly shot and killed by police inside the bar; no other details about him have been released.
Witnesses described hearing numerous loud gunshots ring out inside the club, which sent patrons scrambling for cover. Many got down on the floor.
"I just started hearing these big pops," said the witness, a man who was not identified. "The gunman was throwing smoke grenades."
Then, panic ensued as people tried to flee.
"He just kept firing," the witness said, adding that "people were trying to get out the window" to run away from the gunman, who was wearing a hat and a black jacket and had "a big handgun."
The shooting unfolded as patrons were in the middle of dancing, hanging out and having a good time.
"There were people in the middle dancing and just hanging out and having a good time and you hear that and you just know something's up,'' Erika Sigman said. "In this community, it's very hard for me to comprehend it because I've been here all my life and to think that '' I've never experienced it, I've just never experienced it."
One couple told the CBS that their daughter had been wounded during the incident.
"She was probably on the [dance] floor when this was going on, because she comes here every Wednesday night," the victim's father said. "Things are a little sketchy '' we don't have a lot of information right now."
Another witness who had been hanging out on the bar's patio said another patron saved her.
"A guy who I don't even know who had seen me there was like, 'Get down.' He threw me under one of the tables and then you couldn't see anything because I guess there was smoke. And then one of the guys who was there started throwing tables out the window and they picked us up and they threw me and my girlfriend out the window. They carried us and then I reunited with my friends, and I was lucky to get out. I was only there for a good 10 minutes but I just '' there's like no words. Those are my people and it's just not fair, it's not fair," she said.
Videos published to social media showed young people dressed for a fun night out crying and hugging one another outside the bar.
Young people who were apparently in the #Borderline bar in #ThousandOaks, site of a reported mass shooting, hugging after finding one another. pic.twitter.com/RbZrdfPava
'-- Mike Harris (@Mike___Harris) November 8, 2018One woman shared her horror during an interview with the press and described how she heard the gunshots and saw the shooter throwing smoke bombs.
At least 11 injured in shooting at bar in Thousand Oaks. This lady was inside the bar when shots were fired. Live updates on CBS2 and https://t.co/aTlPPVMJw9 @CBSLATom @Patharveynews @JeffMichaelNews @Stu_Mundel pic.twitter.com/JSNGnlcI42
'-- Chris Holmstrom (@ChrisVHolmstrom) November 8, 2018One young bar patron who spoke with the Washington Post said she heard four loud bangs then ducked for cover. She fled the bar after spotting an accessible exit.
Rochelle Hammons, 24, told The Post that she heard four shots before she was able to flee.
"All of a sudden we heard four shots, you know, 'bang, bang, bang, bang.' Everyone got down on the floor. Everyone ducked and covered each other," she said. ''As everyone crouched down on the floor, I figured that my only chance would be to run out to the nearest exit. I saw the nearest exit, and I ran out as fast as I could.''
From inside her car, she saw the first police officer arrive, she said. She rolled down her window and told him there was an active shooter inside.
"You gotta hurry, you gotta get in there," she urged him.
During an early morning press conference, Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean described how police responded to the shooting after receiving multiple calls, and how California Highway Patrol officer Ron Helus, a 29-year-veteran looking to retire soon, confronted the shooter inside the bar before being shot, per NBC.
"He went in to save lives," Dean said, his voice cracking. "He went in to save other people."
A bomb squad was combing through the scene after some reported smoke bombs going off during the gunfire.
Mitchel Hunter, 19, from Simi Valley, said he saw the gunman. He described him as having light skin with black hair. He said he had a short-barreled semi automatic pistol with a big magazine.
He said he emptied the magazine and reloaded.
"I saw him walk in," Hunter said. "And he started shooting."
Hunter said his friend, Tim Munson, 19, also from Simi Valley, was hospitalized.
Was there a link to terrorism? At this point, "we have no idea."
"We have no idea if there is a terrorism link or not," Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean told reporters outside the Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks, Calif.
Local police from Thousand Oaks and the surrounding towns have responded the incident, as have multiple federal agencies, including the FBI.
50 Route 91 Survivors
Las Vegas massacre survivors were also at the country bar in California when gunman opened fire | Daily Mail Online
Dozens of survivors of last year's Las Vegas massacre where 59 people were tragically killed were also at Wednesday's California bar shooting.
'It's the second time in about a year and a month that this has happened,' Nick Champion told OnSceneTV. 'I was in the Las Vegas Route 91 mass shooting, as well as probably 50 or 60 others who were in the building at the same time as me tonight.'
Champion and his friends were inside country music bar Borderline Bar and Grill for student night Wednesday, when ex-marine Ian Long, 29, stormed in, shooting dead 12 before turning the gun on himself.
He and other Las Vegas survivors considered Borderline a 'place of healing' and gathered at the same bar for a memorial on a student night earlier this year. The group of survivors posed in front of a Borderline sign while holding a Route 91 Harvest banner.
'It's a big thing for us. We all are a big family, and unfortunately, this family got hit twice,' Champion said.
Nick Champion says he and 50 to 60 other Las Vegas survivors were at Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks California during Wednesday night's shooting
Champion and other survivors held a Route 91 Harvest banner at Borderline earlier this year where they often gathered and developed a 'family-like' bond
Witnesses and survivors comfort each other as they stand near the scene of the shooting at the at the Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks, California, last night
Wednesday's traumatic experience is all too familiar for those who survived the Route 91 festival in Las Vegas.
The shooting on October 1, 2017, killed 59 and become the worst in US history.
Gunman Stephen Paddock opened fire through the windows of his suite at the Mandalay Bay hotel which overlooked the country music festival - an event that attracted many of the same audience as those at Borderline.
'A lot of people in the Route 91 situation go here,' Chandler Gunn told the Los Angeles Times. 'There's people that live a whole lifetime without seeing this, and then there's people that have seen it twice.'
Katie Ray, 25, told the Huffington Post she survived the Vegas shooting with her fiance who she met at Borderline.
Ray, who has been frequenting Borderline since 2014, described the bar as 'a place of healing' for the group of Vegas survivors.
In an interview with Billboard earlier this year, Champion said he and about 30 to 40 survivors gathered for a concert at Borderline the Friday after the Las Vegas shooting.
'That was rough. That was when it really sank in - you have that realization that even when you do normal things, it's not necessarily going to feel or be normal,' he said at the time. 'A big group of us were hanging out by one of the exits, where you go through the kitchen and you can get out if you need to.'
Las Vegas police stand guard along the streets outside the festival grounds of the Route 91 Harvest last year after the shooting which saw 59 people killed
Champion is pictured with friends at the Las Vegas country music festival where the largest mass shooting in US history occurred
Borderline Bar and Grill is described as the county's 'Largest Country Dance Hall & Live Music Venue' and boasts of 2,500 sqft of open dance floor, with pool tables, games and flat-screen TVs.
Savannah Stafseth, who was outside on the patio when the shooting started, told the LA Times: 'There are no words. Those are my people. It's just not fair. It's not fair. All these people after Route 91. It's not fair.'
Ian Long, 29, is the gunman who opened fire on Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks, California, on Wednesday
Thousand Oaks is known as an area with low crime and is considered one of the safest cities in America.
Another witness toldABC7 California TV station: 'A lot of my friends survived Route 91. If they survived that, they will survive this.'
The 13th death was the shooter when he turned the gun on himself as police arrived at the scene.
Long stormed the Borderline Bar and Grill, wearing a black trench coat and armed with a pistol equipped with an extended magazine and smoke grenades, and began targeting people as young as 18.
Among those killed was a Ventura County sheriff sergeant called Ron Helus, who was responding to the emergency call.
Around ten to 15 more victims were thought to be injured during the mass shooting, including a bouncer, a young female cashier and college students.
A Ventura County Sheriff's Office official said around 30 shots were fired inside the building.
The gunman then shot himself before police got inside the popular country music venue.
Police officers guard the road leading to the Borderline Bar and Grill. The killer shot himself before police were able to get inside the building
Many inside the bar had to throw bar stools to break the windows and escape as the gunman opened fire
This story was co-published with NPR's Shots blog.
The box of prescription drugs had been forgotten in a back closet of a retail pharmacy for so long that some of the pills predated the 1969 moon landing. Most were 30 to 40 years past their expiration dates '-- possibly toxic, probably worthless.
But to Lee Cantrell, who helps run the California Poison Control System, the cache was an opportunity to answer an enduring question about the actual shelf life of drugs: Could these drugs from the bell-bottom era still be potent?
Cantrell called Roy Gerona, a University of California, San Francisco, researcher who specializes in analyzing chemicals. Gerona had grown up in the Philippines and had seen people recover from sickness by taking expired drugs with no apparent ill effects.
''This was very cool,'' Gerona says. ''Who gets the chance of analyzing drugs that have been in storage for more than 30 years?''
The age of the drugs might have been bizarre, but the question the researchers wanted to answer wasn't. Pharmacies across the country '-- in major medical centers and in neighborhood strip malls '-- routinely toss out tons of scarce and potentially valuable prescription drugs when they hit their expiration dates.
Gerona and Cantrell, a pharmacist and toxicologist, knew that the term ''expiration date'' was a misnomer. The dates on drug labels are simply the point up to which the Food and Drug Administration and pharmaceutical companies guarantee their effectiveness, typically at two or three years. But the dates don't necessarily mean they're ineffective immediately after they ''expire'' '-- just that there's no incentive for drugmakers to study whether they could still be usable.
ProPublica has been researching why the U.S. health care system is the most expensive in the world. One answer, broadly, is waste '-- some of it buried in practices that the medical establishment and the rest of us take for granted. We've documented how hospitals often discard pricey new supplies, how nursing homes trash valuable medications after patients pass away or move out, and how drug companies create expensive combinations of cheap drugs. Experts estimate such squandering eats up about $765 billion a year '-- as much as a quarter of all the country's health care spending.
What if the system is destroying drugs that are technically ''expired'' but could still be safely used?
In his lab, Gerona ran tests on the decades-old drugs, including some now defunct brands such as the diet pills Obocell (once pitched to doctors with a portly figurine called ''Mr. Obocell'') and Bamadex. Overall, the bottles contained 14 different compounds, including antihistamines, pain relievers and stimulants. All the drugs tested were in their original sealed containers.
The findings surprised both researchers: A dozen of the 14 compounds were still as potent as they were when they were manufactured, some at almost 100 percent of their labeled concentrations.
''Lo and behold,'' Cantrell says, ''The active ingredients are pretty darn stable.''
Cantrell and Gerona knew their findings had big implications. Perhaps no area of health care has provoked as much anger in recent years as prescription drugs. The news media is rife with stories of medications priced out of reach or of shortages of crucial drugs, sometimes because producing them is no longer profitable.
Tossing such drugs when they expire is doubly hard. One pharmacist at Newton-Wellesley Hospital outside Boston says the 240-bed facility is able to return some expired drugs for credit, but had to destroy about $200,000 worth last year. A commentary in the journal Mayo Clinic Proceedings cited similar losses at the nearby Tufts Medical Center. Play that out at hospitals across the country and the tab is significant: about $800 million per year. And that doesn't include the costs of expired drugs at long-term care pharmacies, retail pharmacies and in consumer medicine cabinets.
After Cantrell and Gerona published their findings in Archives of Internal Medicine in 2012, some readers accused them of being irresponsible and advising patients that it was OK to take expired drugs. Cantrell says they weren't recommending the use of expired medication, just reviewing the arbitrary way the dates are set.
''Refining our prescription drug dating process could save billions,'' he says.
But after a brief burst of attention, the response to their study faded. That raises an even bigger question: If some drugs remain effective well beyond the date on their labels, why hasn't there been a push to extend their expiration dates?
It turns out that the FDA, the agency that helps set the dates, has long known the shelf life of some drugs can be extended, sometimes by years.
In fact, the federal government has saved a fortune by doing this.
For decades, the federal government has stockpiled massive stashes of medication, antidotes and vaccines in secure locations throughout the country. The drugs are worth tens of billions of dollars and would provide a first line of defense in case of a large-scale emergency.
Maintaining these stockpiles is expensive. The drugs have to be kept secure and at the proper humidity and temperature so they don't degrade. Luckily, the country has rarely needed to tap into many of the drugs, but this means they often reach their expiration dates. Though the government requires pharmacies to throw away expired drugs, it doesn't always follow these instructions itself. Instead, for more than 30 years, it has pulled some medicines and tested their quality.
The idea that drugs expire on specified dates goes back at least a half-century, when the FDA began requiring manufacturers to add this information to the label. The time limits allow the agency to ensure medications work safely and effectively for patients. To determine a new drug's shelf life, its maker zaps it with intense heat and soaks it with moisture to see how it degrades under stress. It also checks how it breaks down over time. The drug company then proposes an expiration date to the FDA, which reviews the data to ensure it supports the date and approves it. Despite the difference in drugs' makeup, most ''expire'' after two or three years.
Cantrell keeps a collection of old bottles of chemicals and medicines. He's tested some of them and found that they're still potent. (Sandy Huffaker for ProPublica)Once a drug is launched, the makers run tests to ensure it continues to be effective up to its labeled expiration date. Since they are not required to check beyond it, most don't, largely because regulations make it expensive and time-consuming for manufacturers to extend expiration dates, says Yan Wu, an analytical chemist who is part of a focus group at the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists that looks at the long-term stability of drugs. Most companies, she says, would rather sell new drugs and develop additional products.
Pharmacists and researchers say there is no economic ''win'' for drug companies to investigate further. They ring up more sales when medications are tossed as ''expired'' by hospitals, retail pharmacies and consumers despite retaining their safety and effectiveness.
Industry officials say patient safety is their highest priority. Olivia Shopshear, director of science and regulatory advocacy for the drug industry trade group Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, or PhRMA, says expiration dates are chosen ''based on the period of time when any given lot will maintain its identity, potency and purity, which translates into safety for the patient.''
That being said, it's an open secret among medical professionals that many drugs maintain their ability to combat ailments well after their labels say they don't. One pharmacist says he sometimes takes home expired over-the-counter medicine from his pharmacy so he and his family can use it.
The federal agencies that stockpile drugs '-- including the military, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Department of Veterans Affairs '-- have long realized the savings in revisiting expiration dates.
In 1986, the Air Force, hoping to save on replacement costs, asked the FDA if certain drugs' expiration dates could be extended. In response, the FDA and Defense Department created the Shelf Life Extension Program.
Each year, drugs from the stockpiles are selected based on their value and pending expiration and analyzed in batches to determine whether their end dates could be safely extended. For several decades, the program has found that the actual shelf life of many drugs is well beyond the original expiration dates.
A 2006 study of 122 drugs tested by the program showed that two-thirds of the expired medications were stable every time a lot was tested. Each of them had their expiration dates extended, on average, by more than four years, according to research published in the Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences.
Some that failed to hold their potency include the common asthma inhalant albuterol, the topical rash spray diphenhydramine, and a local anesthetic made from lidocaine and epinephrine, the study said. But neither Cantrell nor Dr. Cathleen Clancy, associate medical director of National Capital Poison Center, a nonprofit organization affiliated with the George Washington University Medical Center, had heard of anyone being harmed by any expired drugs. Cantrell says there has been no recorded instance of such harm in medical literature.
Marc Young, a pharmacist who helped run the extension program from 2006 to 2009, says it has had a ''ridiculous'' return on investment. Each year the federal government saved $600 million to $800 million because it did not have to replace expired medication, he says.
An official with the Department of Defense, which maintains about $13.6 billion worth of drugs in its stockpile, says that in 2016 it cost $3.1 million to run the extension program, but it saved the department from replacing $2.1 billion in expired drugs. To put the magnitude of that return on investment into everyday terms: It's like spending a dollar to save $677.
''We didn't have any idea that some of the products would be so damn stable '-- so robustly stable beyond the shelf life,'' says Ajaz Hussain, one of the scientists who formerly helped oversee the extension program.
Hussain is now president of the National Institute for Pharmaceutical Technology and Education, an organization of 17 universities that's working to reduce the cost of pharmaceutical development. He says the high price of drugs and shortages make it time to reexamine drug expiration dates in the commercial market.
''It's a shame to throw away good drugs,'' Hussain says.
The drugs kept in emergency crash carts at Newton-Wellesley Hospital, outside Boston, Massachusetts, often expire before they can be used and must be thrown away. (Erik Jacobs for ProPublica)Some medical providers have pushed for a changed approach to drug expiration dates '-- with no success. In 2000, the American Medical Association, foretelling the current prescription drug crisis, adopted a resolution urging action. The shelf life of many drugs, it wrote, seems to be ''considerably longer'' than their expiration dates, leading to ''unnecessary waste, higher pharmaceutical costs, and possibly reduced access to necessary drugs for some patients.''
Citing the federal government's extension program, the AMA sent letters to the FDA, the U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention, which sets standards for drugs, and PhRMA asking for a re-examination of expiration dates.
No one remembers the details '-- just that the effort fell flat.
''Nothing happened, but we tried,'' says rheumatologist Roy Altman, now 80, who helped write the AMA report. ''I'm glad the subject is being brought up again. I think there's considerable waste.''
At Newton-Wellesley Hospital, outside Boston, pharmacist David Berkowitz yearns for something to change.
On a recent weekday, Berkowitz sorted through bins and boxes of medication in a back hallway of the hospital's pharmacy, peering at expiration dates. As the pharmacy's assistant director, he carefully manages how the facility orders and dispenses drugs to patients. Running a pharmacy is like working in a restaurant because everything is perishable, he says, ''but without the free food.''
Federal and state laws prohibit pharmacists from dispensing expired drugs and The Joint Commission, which accredits thousands of health care organizations, requires facilities to remove expired medication from their supply. So at Newton-Wellesley, outdated drugs are shunted to shelves in the back of the pharmacy and marked with a sign that says: ''Do Not Dispense.'' The piles grow for weeks until they are hauled away by a third-party company that has them destroyed. And then the bins fill again.
''I question the expiration dates on most of these drugs,'' Berkowitz says.
One of the plastic boxes is piled with EpiPens '-- devices that automatically inject epinephrine to treat severe allergic reactions. They run almost $300 each. These are from emergency kits that are rarely used, which means they often expire. Berkowitz counts them, tossing each one with a clatter into a separate container, '''... that's 45, 46, 47 '...'' He finishes at 50. That's almost $15,000 in wasted EpiPens alone.
Newton-Wellesley Hospital throws away about $200,000 in expired drugs each year. Studies have shown that many expired drugs are still potent and usable. (Erik Jacobs for ProPublica)In May, Cantrell and Gerona published a study that examined 40 EpiPens and EpiPen Jrs., a smaller version, that had been expired for between one and 50 months. The devices had been donated by consumers, which meant they could have been stored in conditions that would cause them to break down, like a car's glove box or a steamy bathroom. The EpiPens also contain liquid medicine, which tends to be less stable than solid medications.
Testing showed 24 of the 40 expired devices contained at least 90 percent of their stated amount of epinephrine, enough to be considered as potent as when they were made. All of them contained at least 80 percent of their labeled concentration of medication. The takeaway? Even EpiPens stored in less than ideal conditions may last longer than their labels say they do, and if there's no other option, an expired EpiPen may be better than nothing, Cantrell says.
At Newton-Wellesley, Berkowitz keeps a spreadsheet of every outdated drug he throws away. The pharmacy sends what it can back for credit, but it doesn't come close to replacing what the hospital paid.
Then there's the added angst of tossing drugs that are in short supply. Berkowitz picks up a box of sodium bicarbonate, which is crucial for heart surgery and to treat certain overdoses. It's being rationed because there's so little available. He holds up a purple box of atropine, which gives patients a boost when they have low heart rates. It's also in short supply. In the federal government's stockpile, the expiration dates of both drugs have been extended, but they have to be thrown away by Berkowitz and other hospital pharmacists.
The 2006 FDA study of the extension program also said it pushed back the expiration date on lots of mannitol, a diuretic, for an average of five years. Berkowitz has to toss his out. Expired naloxone? The drug reverses narcotic overdoses in an emergency and is currently in wide use in the opioid epidemic. The FDA extended its use-by date for the stockpiled drugs, but Berkowitz has to trash it.
On rare occasions, a pharmaceutical company will extend the expiration dates of its own products because of shortages. That's what happened in June, when the FDA posted extended expiration dates from Pfizer for batches of its injectable atropine, dextrose, epinephrine and sodium bicarbonate. The agency notice included the lot numbers of the batches being extended and added six months to a year to their expiration dates.
David Berkowitz, assistant director of the pharmacy at Newton-Wellesley Hospital, said he questions the validity of many drug expiration dates. (Erik Jacobs for ProPublica)The news sent Berkowitz running to his expired drugs to see if any could be put back into his supply. His team rescued four boxes of the syringes from destruction, including 75 atropine, 15 dextrose, 164 epinephrine and 22 sodium bicarbonate. Total value: $7,500. In a blink, ''expired'' drugs that were in the trash heap were put back into the pharmacy supply.
Berkowitz says he appreciated Pfizer's action, but feels it should be standard to make sure drugs that are still effective aren't thrown away.
''The question is: Should the FDA be doing more stability testing?'' Berkowitz says. ''Could they come up with a safe and systematic way to cut down on the drugs being wasted in hospitals?''
Four scientists who worked on the FDA extension program told ProPublica something like that could work for drugs stored in hospital pharmacies, where conditions are carefully controlled.
Greg Burel, director of the CDC's stockpile, says he worries that if drugmakers were forced to extend their expiration dates it could backfire, making it unprofitable to produce certain drugs and thereby reducing access or increasing prices.
The 2015 commentary in Mayo Clinic Proceedings, called ''Extending Shelf Life Just Makes Sense,'' also suggested that drugmakers could be required to set a preliminary expiration date and then update it after long-term testing. An independent organization could also do testing similar to that done by the FDA extension program, or data from the extension program could be applied to properly stored medications.
ProPublica asked the FDA whether it could expand its extension program, or something like it, to hospital pharmacies, where drugs are stored in stable conditions similar to the national stockpile.
''The Agency does not have a position on the concept you have proposed,'' an official wrote back in an email.
Whatever the solution, the drug industry will need to be spurred in order to change, says Hussain, the former FDA scientist. ''The FDA will have to take the lead for a solution to emerge,'' he says. ''We are throwing away products that are certainly stable, and we need to do something about it.''
Help us investigate wasted health care dollars: Experts say the United States might be squandering a quarter of the money spent on health care. That's an estimated $765 billion a year. Do you believe you've encountered this waste? Tell us.
Six Week Cycle
'Politie regisseerde training terreurgroep op vakantiepark Weert' | NOS
De leden van de groepering die vastzitten op verdenking van het voorbereiden van een terroristische aanslag in Nederland, kregen onder volledige regie van de politie een terrorismetraining op een vakantiepark in Weert. RTL Nieuws meldt op basis van verschillende bronnen dat de training plaatsvond op 27 september jongstleden. Vier van de zeven leden van de terreurgroep waren daarbij aanwezig, net als twee undercover-agenten.
De politie had afluisterapparatuur in het vakantiehuisje aangebracht. De undercover-agenten hadden wapens bij zich waarmee geoefend werd, maar die vooraf onklaar waren gemaakt. De verdachten werd verteld hoe ze met de wapens om moesten gaan en ze kregen bomvesten aangepast. Die bevatten geen explosieven.
BewijsDe hele operatie is door de politie opgezet om zoveel mogelijk bewijs te verzamelen, bevestigen ook bronnen aan de NOS. Meteen nadat de verdachten het vakantiepark in de buurt van Sittard hadden verlaten greep de politie in en hield de vier mannen aan. In Arnhem werden nog eens drie mannen gearresteerd.
De groep wilde volgens justitie een aanslag plegen op een groot evenement, met het doel zo veel mogelijk slachtoffers te maken.
RTL heeft de advocaten van de verdachten benaderd over dit nieuws, maar die wilden niet reageren. Het Openbaar Ministerie geeft pas opening van zaken in de rechtbank.
Tape of Khashoggi's killing has been given to U.S., Saudi, Europeans, Erdogan says
(C) REUTERS/Umit Bektas Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan attends a ceremony as he is flanked by top officials and army officers at the mausoleum of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, marking Ataturk's death anniversary, in Ankara, Turkey November 10, 2018. REUTERS/Umit Bektas ANKARA '-- An audio recording tracking the dying moments of journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul has been shared with Saudi Arabia, Britain, France and Germany in addition to the United States, the Turkish president said Saturday.
''We gave it to Saudi Arabia,'' said Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan spoke at Ankara airport before departing for Paris for commemorations to mark the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I. ''We gave it to America. To the Germans, French, English, we gave it to all of them.''
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The tape is a critical piece of evidence that Turkey says backs up its assertion that Khashoggi, a contributor to The Washington Post World Opinions section, was killed by a Saudi hit team after he entered the consulate on Oct. 2.
Saudi Arabia now acknowledges that Khashoggi was killed, but its internal investigation has not implicated leaders including Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the kingdom's de facto ruler.
Two Turkish officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the topic, said that the audio makes clear that Khashoggi suffered a drawn out death. He is choked for around seven minutes before he dies, they said.
One said he had been told directly by the president that the killers took seven and a half minutes to choke Khashoggi to death. The other, said he had been briefed by someone who had heard it. Neither said they had heard the tape.
Turkey has not said how it obtained a recording from inside the consulate. Wiretapping of foreign missions breaches the Vienna Convention. Turkish newspapers had run stories on how the recording was made by Khashoggi's Apple Watch, a scenario that was met with skepticism by experts.
Slideshow by photo services As Turkey has ratcheted up pressure on Saudi Arabia through leaks to the press on the gruesome killing, Saudi Arabia has been forced to shift its story. It initially insisted that Khashoggi left the consulate shortly after he entered, but now admits he was intentionally killed inside.
''Erdogan can afford for this crisis to play out in a number of different ways, given the strength of his position,'' said one Western diplomat, who declined to be named in line with protocol. ''He has a media infrastructure that works for him, and power is pretty much centralized.''
Turkey has said the killing was carried out by a 15-man Saudi hit squad that traveled to Istanbul from Saudi Arabia to kill him. Erdogan has previously said the orders came from the ''highest levels'' of the Saudi government.
''The murder or murders are definitely within this 15,'' he said. ''The Saudi Arabian administration will succeed in revealing this by making these 15 people talk.''
Turkish officials had repeatedly complained about a lack of cooperation on the part of Saudi Arabia in the investigation, saying that Saudi Arabia's top prosecutor, who visited Istanbul last month, did not share any information.
The Saudi prosecutor was unhelpful, Erdogan said. ''And then they invite our chief prosecutor there,'' he said. ''The scene of the crime is here.''
Saudi Arabia has said it has arrested 18 people involved in the killing.
''They are not telling the whole truth,'' said another Turkish official. ''There is an important person behind this and they have to explain.''
Twitter 'gave Saudis information about journalist who ended up dead' | Metro News
Twitter has come under fire after another dissident journalist was reportedly tortured and killed in Saudi Arabia.
Turki Bin Abdul Aziz Al-Jasser was arrested on March 15 for allegedly running a Twitter account called Kashkool, which exposed human rights violations by Saudi authorities and royals.
He then died while being tortured in detention, The New Khaleej states '' prompting fresh outrage over an alleged leak of information that lead to his capture.
'They got his information from the Twitter office in Dubai. That is how he was arrested,' a source, who wishes to remain anonymous, told Metro.co.uk.
'Twitter has become insecure for dissidents or critics. Everyone speaks under threat and pressure.
Trump threatens to stop giving money to people fighting wildfires 'The accounts of Saudi dissidents are spied on. We are not safe using Twitter.'
The source also claimed that Saud al-Qahtani, the former adviser to the Royal Court, leads a 'cyber spy ring' and has contacts inside the Dubai Twitter office.
They allege that a so-called 'Twitter mole' handed over information on Al-Jasser, leading to his arrest earlier this year.
They're not the only one. After news of Al-Jasser's alleged death broke, many people began using the hashtag #TwitterKilledTurkiAlJasser in an attempt to call out the platform for being 'unsafe'.
'We want justice for activists who arrested because of Twitter,' one person tweeted.
Al-Qahtani, who was dismissed from his role over journalist Jamal Khashoggi's death, alluded to the 'three methods' officials use to unmask activists on social media last year.
In a tweet from 2017, he warned that fake names could not protect dissidents.
'Does your nickname protect you from the #blacklist?' Al-Qahtani wrote online.
'No. 1. States have a way of knowing the owner of the name. 2 '' IP can be identified in many technical ways. 3- The secret I'm not going to say.'
Children's lives are being 'destroyed' by the escalating war in Yemen The source said his tweet is 'considered to be an intended threat'.
A Twitter spokesperson stated that they work hard to protect their users' voices.
'We do not comment on individual cases for privacy and security reasons,' they said.
'Twitter has a well-documented, strong track record of protecting user information and data.
'We require law enforcement to meet a high legal threshold and to undergo strict process when making information requests to Twitter.
'As a company, we will always err on the side of protecting the voices of those who use our service.'
Al-Jasser's alleged killing comes just one month after Washington Post journalist Khashoggi was murdered inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.
DAY ONE: NEW A.G. WHITAKER Drops the Hammer on Illegals; Expands Trump's Authority Over Mexican Border '' True Pundit
In short, illegal aliens can no longer cross into the United States and request asylum.
Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker and Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen today announced an Interim Final Rule declaring that those aliens who contravene a presidential suspension or limitation on entry into the United States through the southern border with Mexico issued under section 212(f) or 215(a)(1) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) will be rendered ineligible for asylum.
The Acting Attorney General and the Secretary issued the following joint statement:
''Consistent with our immigration laws, the President has the broad authority to suspend or restrict the entry of aliens into the United States if he determines it to be in the national interest to do so. Today's rule applies this important principle to aliens who violate such a suspension or restriction regarding the southern border imposed by the President by invoking an express authority provided by Congress to restrict eligibility for asylum. Our asylum system is overwhelmed with too many meritless asylum claims from aliens who place a tremendous burden on our resources, preventing us from being able to expeditiously grant asylum to those who truly deserve it. Today, we are using the authority granted to us by Congress to bar aliens who violate a Presidential suspension of entry or other restriction from asylum eligibility.''
Section 212(f) of the Immigration and INA states that ''[w]henever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate.''
Further, Section 215(a) of the INA states that it is ''unlawful'...for any alien to depart from or enter or attempt to depart from or enter the United States except under such reasonable rules, regulations, and orders, and subject to such limitations and exceptions as the President may prescribe.''
In Section 208(d)(5)(B) of the INA, Congress specified that the Attorney General ''may provide by regulation for any other conditions or limitations on the consideration of an application for asylum.''
Today's new rule applies to prospective presidential proclamations, and is not retroactive.
Asylum is a discretionary form of relief granted by the Executive Branch on a discretionary basis to those fleeing persecution on the basis of their race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion. The rule does not render such aliens ineligible for withholding of removal under the INA or protection from removal under the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.
1 BILLING CODE: 4410-30, 9111''97''P DEPARTM ENT OF HOM ELAND SECURITY 8 CFR Part 208 RIN 1615-AC34 DEPARTM ENT OF JUSTICE Exe cutive Office for Immigratio n Re vie w 8 CFR Parts 1003 and 1208 [EOIR Docke t No. 18-0501; A.G. Orde r No. 4327-2018] RIN 1125-AA89 Alie ns Subje ct to a Bar on Entry unde r Ce rtain Pre side ntial Proclamations; Proce dure s for Prote ction Claims AGENCY: U.S. Citizenship and Immigra tio n Services, Department of Homeland Security; Executive Office for Immigra tio n Review, Department of Justice. ACTION: Interim fina l rule; request for comment. SUM M ARY: The Department of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security (''DOJ,'' ''DHS,'' or, collective ly, ''the Departments'') are adopting an interim final rule governing asylum claims in the context of aliens who are subject to, but contravene, a suspension or limitatio n on entry into the United States through the southern border with Mexico that is imposed by a presidentia l proclamatio n or other presidentia l order (''a proclamatio n'') under section 212(f) or 215(a)(1) of the Immigra tio n and Nationality Act (''INA''). Pursuant to statutory authority, the Departments are amending their respective existing regulatio ns to provide that aliens subject to such a proclamatio n concerning the southern border, but who contravene such a proclamatio n by entering the United States This document is scheduled to be published in theFederal Register on 11/09/2018 and available online athttps://federalregister.gov/d/2018-24594 , and on govinfo.gov
2 after the effective date of such a proclamatio n, are ineligib le for asylum. The interim rule, if applied to a proclamatio n suspending the entry of aliens who cross the southern border unlawfully, would bar such aliens from eligib ility for asylum and thereby channel inadmissib le aliens to ports of entry, where they would be processed in a controlled, orderly, and lawful manner. This rule would apply only prospectively to a proclamatio n issued after the effective date of this rule. It would not apply to a proclamatio n that specifica lly includes an exception for aliens applying for asylum, nor would it apply to aliens subject to a waiver or exception provided by the proclamatio n. DHS is amending its regulatio ns to specify a screening process for aliens who are subject to this specific bar to asylum eligib ility. DOJ is amending its regulatio ns with respect to such aliens. The regulatio ns would ensure that aliens in this category who establish a reasonable fear of persecution or torture could seek withho ld ing of removal under the INA or protection from removal under regulatio ns imple me nting U.S. obligatio ns under Article 3 of the Conventio n Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuma n or Degrading Treatment or Punishme nt (''CAT''). DATES: Effectiv e date: This rule is effective [INSERT DATE OF PUBLICATION IN THE FEDERAL REGISTER]. Submission of public comments: Written or electronic comments must be submitted on or before [INSERT DATE 60 DAYS AFTER DATE OF PUBLICATION IN THE FEDERAL REGISTER]. Written comments postmarked on or before that date will be considered timely. The electronic Federal Docket Manageme nt System will accept comments prior to midnight eastern standard time at the end of that day.
3 ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by EOIR Docket No. 18-0501, by one of the following methods: ' Federal eRulemak ing Portal: http://www.regulations.gov . Follow the instructio ns for submitting comments. ' Mail: Lauren Alder Reid, Assistant Director, Office of Policy, Executive Office for Immigra tio n Review, 5107 Leesburg Pike, Suite 2616, Falls Church, VA 22041. To ensure proper handling, please reference EOIR Docket No. 18-0501 on your correspondence. This mailing address may be used for paper, disk, or CD''ROM submissio ns. ' Hand Deliv ery/Courier: Lauren Alder Reid, Assistant Director, Office of Policy, Executive Office for Immigratio n Review, 5107 Leesburg Pike, Suite 2616, Falls Church, VA 22041, Contact Telephone Number (703) 305''0289 (not a toll-free call). FOR FURTHER INFORM ATION CONTACT: Lauren Alder Reid, Assistant Director, Office of Policy, Executive Office for Immigra tio n Review, 5107 Leesburg Pike, Suite 2616, Falls Church, VA 22041, Contact Telephone Number (703) 305''0289 (not a toll-free call). SUPPLEM ENTARY INFORM ATION: I. Public Participatio n Interested persons are invited to participate in this rulemak ing by submitting written data, views, or arguments on all aspects of this rule. The Departments also invite comments that relate to the economic or federalism effects that might result from this rule. To provide the most assistance to the Departments, comments should reference a
4 specific portion of the rule; explain the reason for any recommended change; and include data, informa tio n, or authority that supports the recommended change. All comments submitted for this rulemak ing should include the agency name and EOIR Docket No. 18-0501. Please note that all comments received are considered part of the public record and made availab le for public inspection at www.regulations.gov. Such informatio n includes personally identifiab le informa tio n (such as a person's name, address, or any other data that might personally identify that individ ua l) that the commenter voluntarily submits. If you want to submit personally identifiab le informa tio n as part of your comment, but do not want it to be posted online, you must include the phrase ''PERSONALLY IDENTIFIABLE INFORMATION'' in the first paragraph of your comment and precisely and prominently identify the informatio n of which you seek redaction. If you want to submit confidentia l business informa tio n as part of your comment, but do not want it to be posted online, you must includ e the phrase ''CONFIDENTIAL BUSINESS INFORMATION'' in the first paragraph of your comment and precisely and prominently identify the confidentia l business informatio n of which you seek redaction. If a comment has so much confidentia l business informatio n that it cannot be effective ly redacted, all or part of that comment may not be posted on www.regulations.gov. Personally identifiab le informa tio n and confidentia l business informatio n provided as set forth above will be placed in the public docket file of DOJ's Executive Office of Immigra tio n Review (''EOIR''), but not posted online. To inspect the public docket file in person, you must make an appointme nt with EOIR. Please see the FOR FURTHER
5 INFORMATION CONTACT paragraph above for the contact informatio n specific to this rule. II. Purpose of This Inte rim Final Rule This interim final rule (''interim rule'' or ''rule'') governs eligib ility for asylum and screening procedures for aliens subject to a presidentia l proclamatio n or order restricting entry issued pursuant to section 212(f) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1182(f), or section 215(a)(1) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1185(a)(1), that concerns entry to the United States along the southern border with Mexico and is issued on or after the effective date of this rule. Pursuant to statutory authority, the interim rule renders such aliens ineligib le for asylum if they enter the United States after the effective date of such a proclamatio n, become subject to the proclamatio n, and enter the United States in violatio n of the suspension or limita tio n of entry established by the proclamatio n. The interim rule, if applied to a proclamatio n suspending the entry of aliens who cross the southern border unlawfully, would bar such aliens from eligib ility for asylum and thereby channel inadmissib le aliens to ports of entry, where such aliens could seek to enter and would be processed in an orderly and controlled manner. Aliens who enter prior to the effective date of an applicable proclamatio n will not be subject to this asylum eligib ility bar unless they depart and reenter while the proclamatio n remains in effect. Aliens also will not be subject to this eligib ility bar if they fall within an exception or waiver within the proclamatio n that makes the suspension or limitatio n of entry in the proclamatio n inapplicab le to them, or if the proclamatio n provides that it does not affect eligib ility for asylum.
6 As discussed further below, asylum is a discretionary immigratio n benefit. In general, aliens may apply for asylum if they are physica lly present or arrive in the United States, irrespective of their status and irrespective of whether or not they arrive at a port of entry, as provided in section 208(a) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1158(a). Congress, however, provided that certain categories of aliens could not receive asylum and further delegated to the Attorney General and the Secretary of Homeland Security (''Secretary'') the authority to promulgate regulatio ns establishing additiona l bars on eligib ility that are consistent with the asylum statute and ''any other conditio ns or limitatio ns on the consideratio n of an applicatio n for asylum'' that are consistent with the INA. See INA 208(b)(2)(C), (d)(5)(B), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(2)(C), (d)(5)(B). In the Illega l Immigratio n Reform and Immigratio n Responsibility Act of 1996 (''IIRIRA''), Public Law 104208, Congress, concerned with rampant delays in proceedings to remove illega l aliens, created expedited procedures for removing inadmissib le aliens, and authorized the extensio n of such procedures to aliens who entered ille ga lly and were apprehended within two years of their entry. See generally INA 235(b), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b). Those procedures were aimed at facilitating the swift removal of inadmissib le aliens, includ ing those who had entered ille ga lly, while also expeditio usly resolving any asylum claims. For instance, Congress provided that any alien who asserted a fear of persecution would appear before an asylum officer, and that any alien who is determined to have established a ''credible fear'''--mea ning a ''significa nt possibility . . . that the alien could establish eligib ility for asylum'' under the asylum statute'--would be detained for further consideratio n of an asylum claim. See INA 235(b)(1), (b)(1)(B)(v), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1), (b)(1)(B)(v).
7 When the expedited procedures were first imple me nted approximate ly two decades ago, relative ly few aliens within those proceedings asserted an intent to apply for asylum or a fear of persecution. Rather, most aliens found inadmissib le at the southern border were single adults who were immed iate ly repatriated to Mexico. Thus, while the overall number of illega l aliens apprehended was far higher than it is today (around 1.6 millio n in 2000), aliens could be processed and removed more quickly, without requiring detention or lengthy court proceedings. In recent years, the United States has seen a large increase in the number and proportion of inadmissib le aliens subject to expedited removal who assert an intent to apply for asylum or a fear of persecution during that process and are subsequently placed into removal proceedings in immigra tio n court. Most of those aliens unlawfully enter the country between ports of entry along the southern border. Over the past decade, the overall percentage of aliens subject to expedited removal and referred, as part of the initia l screening process, for a credible-fear intervie w jumped from approximate ly 5% to above 40%, and the total number of credible-fear referrals for interviews increased from about 5,000 a year in Fiscal Year (''FY'') 2008 to about 97,000 in FY 2018. Furthermore, the percentage of cases in which asylum officers found that the alien had established a credible fear'--leading to the alien's placement in full immigratio n proceedings under section 240 of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1229a'--has also increased in recent years. In FY 2008, when asylum officers resolved a referred case with a credible-fear determinatio n, they made a positive find ing about 77% of the time. That percentage rose to 80% by FY 2014. In FY 2018, that percentage of positive credible-fear determinatio ns has climbed to about 89% of all cases. After this initia l screening process, however, significa nt
8 proportions of aliens who receive a positive credible-fear determinatio n never file an applicatio n for asylum or are ordered removed in absentia. In FY 2018, a total of about 6,000 aliens who passed through credible-fear screening (17% of all completed cases, 27% of all completed cases in which an asylum applicatio n was filed, and about 36% of cases where the asylum claim was adjudicated on the merits) established that they should be granted asylum. Apprehending and processing this growing number of aliens who cross illega lly into the United States and invoke asylum procedures thus consumes an ever increasing amount of resources of DHS, which must surveil, apprehend, and process the aliens who enter the country. Congress has also required DHS to detain all aliens during the pendency of their credible-fear proceedings, which can take days or weeks. And DOJ must also dedicate substantia l resources: its immigratio n judges adjudicate aliens' claims, and its offic ia ls are responsible for prosecuting and mainta ining custody over those who violate the crimina l law. The strains on the Departments are particularly acute with respect to the rising numbers of family units, who generally cannot be detained if they are found to have a credible fear, due to a combinatio n of resource constraints and the manner in which the terms of the Settlement Agreement in Flores v . Reno have been interpreted by courts. See Stipulated Settlement Agreement, Flores v . Reno, No. 85-cv-4544 (N.D. Cal. Jan. 17, 1997). In recent weeks, United States offic ia ls have each day encountered an average of approximate ly 2,000 inadmissib le aliens at the southern border. At the same time, large caravans of thousands of aliens, primarily from Central America, are attempting to make their way to the United States, with the apparent intent of seeking asylum after entering
9 the United States unlawfully or without proper documentatio n. Central American nationa ls represent a majority of aliens who enter the United States unlawfully, and are also disproportiona te ly likely to choose to enter illega lly between ports of entry rather than presenting themselves at a port of entry. As discussed below, aliens who enter unlawfully between ports of entry along the southern border, as opposed to at a port of entry, pose a greater strain on DHS's already stretched detention and processing resources and also engage in conduct that seriously endangers themselve s, any children traveling with them, and the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (''CBP'') agents who seek to apprehend them. The United States has been engaged in sustained diplomatic negotiatio ns with Mexico and the Northern Triangle countries (Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala ) regarding the situatio n on the southern border, but those negotiatio ns have, to date, proved unable to meaningfully improve the situatio n. The purpose of this rule is to limit aliens' eligib ility for asylum if they enter in contraventio n of a proclamatio n suspending or restricting their entry along the southern border. Such aliens would contravene a measure that the President has determined to be in the nationa l interest. For instance, a proclamatio n restricting the entry of inadmissib le aliens who enter unlawfully between ports of entry would reflect a determinatio n that this particular category of aliens necessitates a response that would supplement existing prohibitio ns on entry for all inadmissib le aliens. Such a proclamatio n would encourage such aliens to seek admissio n and indicate an intentio n to apply for asylum at ports of entry. Aliens who enter in violatio n of that proclamatio n would not be eligib le for asylum. They would, however, remain eligib le for statutory withho ld ing of removal
10 under section 241(b)(3) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1231(b)(3), or for protections under the regulatio ns issued under the authority of the imple me nting legislatio n regarding Article 3 of the CAT. The Departments anticipate that a large number of aliens who would be subject to a proclamatio n-based ineligib ility bar would be subject to expedited-remo va l proceedings. Accordingly, this rule ensures that asylum officers and immigratio n judges account for such aliens' ineligib ility for asylum within the expedited-remova l process, so that aliens subject to such a bar will be processed swiftly. Furthermore, the rule continues to afford protection from removal for individ ua ls who establish that they are more likely than not to be persecuted or tortured in the country of removal. Aliens rendered ineligib le for asylum by this interim rule and who are referred for an intervie w in the expedited-remova l process are still eligib le to seek withhold ing of removal under section 241(b)(3) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1231(b)(3), or protections under the regulatio ns issued under the authority of the imple me nting legisla tio n regarding Article 3 of the CAT. Such aliens could pursue such claims in proceedings before an immigratio n judge under section 240 of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1229a, if they establish a reasonable fear of persecution or torture. III. Background A. Joint Inte rim Rule The Attorney General and the Secretary of Homeland Security publish this joint interim rule pursuant to their respective authoritie s concerning asylum determinatio ns. The Homeland Security Act of 2002, Public Law 107296, as amended, transferred many functio ns related to the execution of federal immigra tio n law to the
11 newly created Department of Homeland Security. The Homeland Security Act of 2002 charges the Secretary ''with the administratio n and enforcement of this chapter and all other laws relating to the immigra tio n and naturalizatio n of aliens,'' 8 U.S.C. 1103(a)(1), and grants the Secretary the power to take all actions ''necessary for carrying out'' the provisions of the INA, id. 1103(a)(3). The Homeland Security Act of 2002 also transferred to DHS some responsibility for affirmative asylum applicatio ns, i.e., applicatio ns for asylum made outside the removal context. See 6 U.S.C. 271(b)(3). Those authoritie s have been delegated to U.S. Citize nship and Immigratio n Services (''USCIS''). USCIS asylum officers determine in the first instance whether an alien's affirma tive asylum applicatio n should be granted. See 8 CFR 208.9. But the Homeland Security Act of 2002 retained authority over certain individ ua l immigra tio n adjudicatio ns (includ ing those related to defensive asylum applicatio ns) in DOJ, under the Executive Office for Immigratio n Review (''EOIR'') and subject to the direction and regulatio n of the Attorney General. See 6 U.S.C. 521; 8 U.S.C. 1103(g). Thus, immigratio n judges within DOJ continue to adjudicate all asylum applicatio ns made by aliens during the removal process (defensive asylum applicatio ns), and they also review affirma tive asylum applicatio ns referred by USCIS to the immigra tio n court. See INA 101(b)(4), 8 U.S.C. 1101(b)(4); 8 CFR 1208.2; Dhak al v . Sessions, 895 F.3d 532, 536''37 (7th Cir. 2018) (describing affirmative and defensive asylum processes). The Board of Immigra tio n Appeals (''BIA'' or ''Board''), also within DOJ, in turn hears appeals from immigratio n judges' decisions. 8 CFR 1003.1. In addition, the INA provides ''[t]hat determina tio n and ruling by the Attorney General with respect to all questions of law shall be controlling. '' INA 103(a)(1), 8 U.S.C. 1103(a)(1).
12 This broad divisio n of functio ns and authorities informs the background of this interim rule. B. Le gal Frame work for Asylum Asylum is a form of discretiona ry relief under section 208 of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1158, that precludes an alien from being subject to removal, creates a path to lawful permanent resident status and citizenship, and affords a variety of other benefits, such as allowing certain alien family members to obtain lawful immigratio n status derivative ly. See R-S-C v . Sessions, 869 F.3d 1176, 1180 (10th Cir. 2017); see also, e.g., INA 208(c)(1)(A), (C), 8 U.S.C. 1158(c)(1)(A), (C) (asylees cannot be removed and can travel abroad with prior consent); INA 208(b)(3), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(3) (allowing derivative asylum for asylee's spouse and unmarried children); INA 209(b), 8 U.S.C. 1159(b) (allowing the Attorney General or Secretary to adjust the status of an asylee to that of a lawful permanent resident); INA 316(a), 8 U.S.C. 1427(a) (describing requireme nts for naturaliza tio n of lawful permanent residents). Aliens who are granted asylum are authorized to work in the United States and may receive certain financ ia l assistance from the federal governme nt. See INA 208(c)(1)(B), (d)(2), 8 U.S.C. 1158(c)(1)(B), (d)(2); 8 U.S.C. 1612(a)(2)(A), (b)(2)(A); 8 U.S.C. 1613(b)(1); 8 CFR 274a.12(a)(5); see also 8 CFR 274a.12(c)(8) (providing that asylum applicants may seek employme nt authorizatio n 150 days after filing a complete applicatio n for asylum). Aliens applying for asylum must establish that they meet the definitio n of a ''refugee, '' that they are not subject to a bar to the granting of asylum, and that they merit a favorable exercise of discretion. INA 208(b)(1), 240(c)(4)(A), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(1), 1229a(c)(4)(A); see Moncrieffe v . Holder, 569 U.S. 184, 187 (2013) (describing asylum as a form of ''discretio na ry relief from removal''); Delgado v . Muk asey, 508 F.3d 702,
13 705 (2d Cir. 2007) (''Asylum is a discretiona ry form of relief . . . . Once an applicant has established eligib ility . . . it remains within the Attorney General's discretion to deny asylum. ''). Because asylum is a discretiona ry form of relief from removal, the alien bears the burden of showing both eligib ility for asylum and why the Attorney General or Secretary should exercise discretion to grant relief. See INA 208(b)(1), 240(c)(4)(A), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(1), 1229a(c)(4)(A); Romilus v . Ashcroft, 385 F.3d 1, 8 (1st Cir. 2004). Section 208 of the INA provides that, in order to apply for asylum, an applicant must be ''physica lly present'' or ''arriv[e]'' in the United States, ''whether or not at a designated port of arrival'' and ''irrespective of such alien's status'''--but the applicant must also ''apply for asylum in accordance with'' the rest of section 208 or with the expedited-remova l process in section 235 of the INA. INA 208(a)(1), 8 U.S.C. 1158(a)(1). Furthermore, to be granted asylum, the alien must demonstrate that he or she meets the statutory definitio n of a ''refugee, '' INA 208(b)(1)(A), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(1)(A), and is not subject to an exception or bar, INA 208(b)(2), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(2). The alien bears the burden of proof to establish that he or she meets these criteria. INA 208(b)(1)(B)(i), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(1)(B)(i); 8 CFR 1240.8(d). For an alien to establish that he or she is a ''refugee, '' the alien generally must be someone who is outside of his or her country of nationa lity and ''is unable or unwilling to return to . . . that country because of persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution on account of race, religio n, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or politica l opinion. '' INA 101(a)(42)(A), 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(42)(A). In addition, if evidence indicates that one or more of the grounds for mandatory denial may apply, an alien must show that he or she does not fit within one of the
14 statutory bars to granting asylum and is not subject to any ''additiona l limita tio ns and conditions . . . under which an alien shall be ineligib le for asylum'' established by a regulatio n that is ''consistent with'' section 208 of the INA. INA 208(b)(2)(C), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(2)(C); see 8 CFR 1240.8(d). The INA currently bars a grant of asylum to any alien: (1) who ''ordered, incited, assisted, or otherwise participated in the persecution of any person on account of'' a protected ground; (2) who, ''having been convicted by a final judgment of a particularly serious crime, constitutes a danger to the community of the United States''; (3) for whom there are serious reasons to believe the alien ''has committed a serious nonpolitica l crime outside the United States'' prior to arrival in the United States; (4) for whom ''there are reasonable grounds for regarding the alien as a danger to the security of the United States''; (5) who is described in the terrorism-re lated inadmissib ility grounds, with limited exceptions; or (6) who ''was firmly resettled in another country prior to arriving in the United States.'' INA 208(b)(2)(A)(i)''(vi), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(2)(A)(i)''(vi). An alien who falls within any of those bars is subject to mandatory denial of asylum. Where there is evidence that ''one or more of the grounds for mandatory denial of the applicatio n for relief may apply,'' the applicant in immigratio n court proceedings bears the burden of establishing that the bar at issue does not apply. 8 CFR 1240.8(d); see also, e.g., Rendon v . Muk asey, 520 F.3d 967, 973 (9th Cir. 2008) (applying 8 CFR 1240.8(d) in the context of the aggravated felony bar to asylum); Gao v . U.S. Att'y Gen., 500 F.3d 93, 98 (2d Cir. 2007) (applying 8 CFR 1240.8(d) in the context of the persecutor bar); Chen v . U.S. Att'y Gen., 513 F.3d 1255, 1257 (11th Cir. 2008) (same).
15 Because asylum is a discretionary benefit, aliens who are eligib le for asylum are not automatica lly entitled to it. After demonstrating eligib ility, aliens must further meet their burden of showing that the Attorney General or Secretary should exercise his or her discretion to grant asylum. See INA 208(b)(1)(A), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(1)(A) (the ''Secretary of Homeland Security or the Attorney General may grant asylum to an alien'' who applies in accordance with the required procedures and meets the definitio n of a ''refugee''). The asylum statute's grant of discretion ''is a broad delegation of power, which restricts the Attorney General's discretio n to grant asylum only by requiring the Attorney General to first determine that the asylum applicant is a 'refugee.''' Komarenk o v . INS, 35 F.3d 432, 436 (9th Cir. 1994), ov erruled on other grounds by Abebe v . Muk asey, 554 F.3d 1203 (9th Cir. 2009) (en banc) (per curiam). Immigra tio n judges and asylum officers exercise that delegated discretion on a case-by-case basis. Under the Board's decision in Matter of Pula, 19 I&N Dec. 467 (BIA 1987), and its progeny, ''an alien's manner of entry or attempted entry is a proper and relevant discretio nary factor'' and ''circumve ntio n of orderly refugee procedures'' can be a ''serious adverse factor'' against exercising discretion to grant asylum, id. at 473, but ''[t]he danger of persecution will outweigh all but the most egregious adverse factors,'' Matter of Kasinga, 21 I&N Dec. 357, 367 (BIA 1996). C. Establishing Bars to Asylum The availab ility of asylum has long been qualified both by statutory bars and by administrative discretion to create additiona l bars. Those bars have developed over time in a back-and-forth process between Congress and the Attorney General. The origina l asylum provisio ns, as set out in the Refugee Act of 1980, Public Law 96212, simply
16 directed the Attorney General to ''establish a procedure for an alien physica lly present in the United States or at a land border or port of entry, irrespective of such alien's status, to apply for asylum, and the alien may be granted asylum in the discretion of the Attorney General if the Attorney General determines that such alien is a refugee'' within the meaning of the title. See 8 U.S.C. 1158(a) (1982); see also INS v . Cardoza-Fonseca, 480 U.S. 421, 427''29 (1987) (describing the 1980 provisions). In the 1980 imple me nting regulatio ns, the Attorney General, in his discretion, established several mandatory bars to granting asylum that were modeled on the mandatory bars to eligib ility for withhold ing of deportation under the existing section 243(h) of the INA. See Refugee and Asylum Procedures, 45 FR 37392, 37392 (June 2, 1980) (''The applicatio n will be denied if the alien does not come within the definitio n of refugee under the Act, is firmly resettled in a third country, or is within one of the undesirab le groups described in section 243(h) of the Act, e.g., having been convicted of a serious crime, constitutes a danger to the United States.''). Those regulatio ns required denial of an asylum applicatio n if it was determined that (1) the alien was ''not a refugee within the meaning of section 101(a)(42)'' of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(42); (2) the alien had been ''firmly resettled in a foreign country'' before arriving in the United States; (3) the alien ''ordered, incited, assisted, or otherwise participated in the persecution of any person on account of race, religio n, nationa lity, membership in a particula r group, or politica l opinion''; (4) the alien had ''been convicted by a final judgment of a particula rly serious crime'' and therefore constituted ''a danger to the community of the United States''; (5) there were ''serious reasons for considering that the alien ha[d] committed a serious non-politica l crime outside the United States prior to the arrival of the alien in the
17 United States''; or (6) there were ''reasonable grounds for regarding the alien as a danger to the security of the United States.'' See id. at 37394''95. In 1990, the Attorney General substantia lly amended the asylum regulatio ns while retaining the mandatory bars for aliens who persecuted others on account of a protected ground, were convicted of a particularly serious crime in the United States, firmly resettled in another country, or presented reasonable grounds to be regarded as a danger to the security of the United States. See Asylum and Withho ld ing of Deportation Procedures, 55 FR 30674, 30683 (July 27, 1990); see also Yang v . INS, 79 F.3d 932, 936''39 (9th Cir. 1996) (upholding firm-resettle me nt bar); Komarenk o, 35 F.3d at 436 (upholding particula rly-serio us-crime bar). In the Immigra tio n Act of 1990, Public Law 101649, Congress added an additiona l mandatory bar to applying for or being granted asylum for ''[a]n[y] alien who has been convicted of an aggravated felony. '' Pub. L. 101649, sec. 515. In IIRIRA and the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996, Public Law 104132, Congress amended the asylum provisio ns in section 208 of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1158. Among other amendments, Congress created three exceptions to section 208(a)(1)'s provision that an alien may apply for asylum, for (1) aliens who can be removed to a safe third country pursuant to bilateral or multila tera l agreement; (2) aliens who failed to apply for asylum within one year of arriving in the United States; and (3) aliens who have previously applied for asylum and had the applicatio n denied. Pub. L. 104208, div. C, sec. 604(a); see INA 208(a)(2)(A)(C), 8 U.S.C. 1158(a)(2)(A)(C). Congress also adopted six mandatory exceptions to the authority of the Attorney General or Secretary to grant asylum that largely reflect pre-existing bars set forth in the
18 Attorney General's asylum regulatio ns. These exceptions cover (1) aliens who ''ordered, incited, or otherwise participated '' in the persecution of others on account of a protected ground; (2) aliens convicted of a ''particularly serious crime''; (3) aliens who committed a ''serious nonpolitica l crime outside the United States'' before arriving in the United States; (4) aliens who are a ''danger to the security of the United States''; (5) aliens who are inadmissib le or removable under a set of specified grounds relating to terrorist activity; and (6) aliens who have ''firmly resettled in another country prior to arriving in the United States.'' Pub. L. 104208, div. C, sec. 604(a); see INA 208(b)(2)(A)(i)(vi), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(2)(A)(i)(vi). Congress further added that aggravated felonies, defined in 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(43), would be considered ''particularly serious crime[s].'' Pub. L. 104208, div. C, sec. 604(a); see INA 201(a)(43), 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(43). Although Congress enacted specific exceptions, that statutory list is not exhaustive. Congress, in IIRIRA, expressly authorized the Attorney General to expand upon two of those exceptions'--the bars for ''particularly serious crimes'' and ''serious nonpolitica l offenses. '' While Congress prescribed that all aggravated felonies constitute particularly serious crimes, Congress further provided that the Attorney General may ''designate by regulatio n offenses that will be considered'' a ''particula rly serious crime'' that ''constitute s a danger to the community of the United States.'' INA 208(b)(2)(A)(ii), (B)(ii), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(2)(A)(ii), (B)(ii). Courts and the Board have long held that this grant of authority also authorize s the Board to identify additiona l particularly serious crimes (beyond aggravated felonies) through case-by-case adjudicatio n. See, e.g., Ali v . Achim, 468 F.3d 462, 468''69 (7th Cir. 2006); Delgado v . Holder, 648 F.3d 1095, 1106 (9th Cir. 2011) (en banc). Congress likewise authorized the Attorney General to
19 designate by regulatio n offenses that constitute ''a serious nonpolitic a l crime outside the United States prior to the arrival of the alien in the United States.'' INA 208(b)(2)(A)(iii), (B)(ii), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(2)(A)(iii), (B)(ii). Although these provisions continue to refer only to the Attorney General, the Departments interpret these provisions to also apply to the Secretary of Homeland Security by operation of the Homeland Security Act of 2002. See 6 U.S.C. 552; 8 U.S.C. 1103(a)(1). Congress further provided the Attorney General with the authority, by regulatio n, to ''establish additiona l limitatio ns and conditio ns, consistent with [section 208 of the INA], under which an alien shall be ineligib le for asylum under paragraph (1).'' INA 208(b)(2)(C), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(2)(C). As the Tenth Circuit has recognized, ''the statute clearly empowers'' the Attorney General to ''adopt further limita tio ns'' on asylum eligib ility. R-S-C, 869 F.3d at 1187 & n.9. By allowing the impositio n by regulatio n of ''additio na l limita tio ns and conditions, '' the statute gives the Attorney General and the Secretary broad authority in determining what the ''limitatio ns and conditions'' should be. The additiona l limita tio ns on eligib ility must be established ''by regulatio n, '' and must be ''consiste nt with'' the rest of section 208 of the INA. INA 208(b)(2)(C), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(2)(C). Thus, the Attorney General in the past has invoked section 208(b)(2)(C) of the INA to limit eligib ility for asylum based on a ''funda me nta l change in circumsta nces'' and on the ability of an applicant to safely relocate interna lly within the alien's country of nationa lity or of last habitua l residence. See Asylum Procedures, 65 FR 76121, 76126 (Dec. 6, 2000). The courts have also viewed section 208(b)(2)(C) as conferring broad discretion, includ ing to render aliens ineligib le for asylum based on fraud. See R-S-C,
20 869 F.3d at 1187; Nijjar v . Holder, 689 F.3d 1077, 1082 (9th Cir. 2012) (noting that fraud can be ''one of the 'additiona l limita tio ns . . . under which an alien shall be ineligib le for asylum' that the Attorney General is authorized to establish by regulatio n''). Section 208(d)(5) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1158(d)(5), also establishes certain procedures for consideratio n of asylum applicatio ns. But Congress specified that the Attorney General ''may provide by regulatio n for any other conditions or limita tio ns on the consideratio n of an applicatio n for asylum, '' so long as those limitatio ns are ''not inconsiste nt with this chapter.'' INA 208(d)(5)(B), 8 U.S.C. 1158(d)(5)(B). In sum, the current statutory framework leaves the Attorney General (and, after the Homeland Security Act, the Secretary) significa nt discretion to adopt additiona l bars to asylum eligib ility. Beyond providing discretion to further define particularly serious crimes and serious nonpolitica l offenses, Congress has provided the Attorney General and Secretary with discretion to establish by regulatio n any additiona l limitatio ns or conditions on eligib ility for asylum or on the consideratio n of applicatio ns for asylum, so long as these limitatio ns are consistent with the asylum statute. D. Othe r Forms of Prote ction Aliens who are not eligib le to apply for or be granted asylum, or who are denied asylum on the basis of the Attorney General's or the Secretary's discretion, may nonetheless qualify for protection from removal under other provisions of the immigra tio n laws. A defensive applicatio n for asylum that is submitted by an alien in removal proceedings is also deemed an applicatio n for statutory withho ld ing of removal under section 241(b)(3) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1231(b)(3). See 8 CFR 208.30(e)(2)''(4), 1208.3(b), 1208.16(a). An immigra tio n judge may also consider an alien's eligib ility for
21 withho ld ing and deferral of removal under regulatio ns issued pursuant to the authority of the impleme nting legisla tio n regarding Article 3 of the CAT. See Foreign Affairs Reform and Restructuring Act of 1998, Pub. L. 105277, div. G, sec. 2242(b); 8 CFR 1208.3(b); see also 8 CFR 1208.161208.17. These forms of protection bar an alien's removal to any country where the alien would ''more likely than not'' face persecution or torture, meaning that the alien would face a clear probability that his or her life or freedom would be threatened on account of a protected ground or a clear probability of torture. 8 CFR 1208.16(b)(2), (c)(2); see Kouljinsk i v . Keisler, 505 F.3d 534, 54445 (6th Cir. 2007); Sulaiman v . Gonzales, 429 F.3d 347, 351 (1st Cir. 2005). Thus, if an alien proves that it is more likely than not that the alien's life or freedom would be threatened on account of a protected ground, but is denied asylum for some other reason'--for instance, because of a statutory exception, an eligib ility bar adopted by regulatio n, or a discretionary denial of asylum'--the alien may be entitled to statutory withho ld ing of removal if not otherwise barred for that form of protection. INA 241(b)(3), 8 U.S.C. 1231(b)(3); 8 CFR 208.16, 1208.16; see also Garcia v . Sessions, 856 F.3d 27, 40 (1st Cir. 2017) (''[W]ithho ld ing of removal has long been understood to be a mandatory protection that must be given to certain qualifying aliens, while asylum has never been so understood.''). Likewise, an alien who establishe s that he or she will more likely than not face torture in the country of removal will qualify for CAT protection. See 8 CFR 208.16(c), 1208.16(c). But, unlike asylum, statutory withho ld ing and CAT protection do not: (1) prohibit the Governme nt from removing the alien to a third country where the alien would not face the requisite probability of persecution or torture; (2) create a path to lawful permanent resident status and
22 citize nship ; or (3) afford the same ancillary benefits (such as protection for derivative family members). See R-S-C, 869 F.3d at 1180. E. Imple me ntation of Tre aty Obligations The framework described above is consistent with certain U.S. obligatio ns under the 1967 Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees (''Refugee Protocol''), which incorporates Articles 2 to 34 of the 1951 Conventio n Relating to the Status of Refugees (''Refugee Convention''), as well as U.S. obligatio ns under Article 3 of the CAT. Neither the Refugee Protocol nor the CAT is self-executing in the United States. See Khan v . Holder, 584 F.3d 773, 783 (9th Cir. 2009) ('[T]he [Refugee] Protocol is not self-executing. ''); Auguste v . Ridge, 395 F.3d 123, 132 (3d Cir. 2005) (the CAT ''was not self-executing''). These treaties are not directly enforceable in U.S. law, but some of the obligatio ns they contain have been imple me nted through domestic imple me nting legislatio n. For example, the United States has imple me nted the non-refoule me nt provisions of these treaties'--i.e., provisions prohibiting the return of an individ ua l to a country where he or she would face persecution or torture'--through the withho ld ing of removal provisio ns at section 241(b)(3) of the INA and the CAT regulatio ns, not through the asylum provisions at section 208 of the INA. See Cardoza-Fonseca, 480 U.S. at 440''41; Foreign Affairs Reform and Restructuring Act of 1998, Pub. L. 105277, div. G, sec. 2242(b); 8 CFR 208.16(c), 208.17208.18; 1208.16(c), 1208.171208.18. Limitatio ns on the availability of asylum that do not affect the statutory withho ld ing of removal or protection under the CAT regulatio ns are consistent with these provisions. See R-S-C, 869 F.3d at 1188 & n.11; Cazun v . Att'y Gen., 856 F.3d 249, 257 & n.16 (3d Cir. 2017); Ramirez-Mejia v . Lynch, 813 F.3d 240, 241 (5th Cir. 2016).
23 Limitatio ns on eligib ility for asylum are also consistent with Article 34 of the Refugee Conventio n, concerning assimilatio n of refugees, as imple me nted by section 208 of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1158. Section 208 of the INA reflects that Article 34 is precatory and not mandatory, and accordingly does not provide that all refugees shall receive asylum. See Cardoza-Fonseca, 480 U.S. at 441; Garcia, 856 F.3d at 42; Cazun, 856 F.3d at 257 & n. 16; Mejia v . Sessions, 866 F.3d 573, 588 (4th Cir. 2017); R-S-C, 869 F.3d at 1188; Ramirez-Mejia, 813 F.3d at 241. As noted above, Congress has long recognized the precatory nature of Article 34 by imposing various statutory exceptions and by authorizing the creation of new bars to asylum eligib ility through regulatio n. Courts have likewise rejected arguments that other provisio ns of the Refugee Conventio n require every refugee to receive asylum. Courts have held, in the context of upholding the bar on eligib ility for asylum in reinstateme nt proceedings under section 241(a)(5) of the INA, 8 U.S.C 1231(a)(5), that limiting the ability to apply for asylum does not constitute a prohibited ''penalty'' under Article 31(1) of the Refugee Conventio n. Cazun, 856 F.3d at 257 & n.16; Mejia, 866 F.3d at 588. Courts have also rejected the argument that Article 28 of the Refugee Conventio n, governing the issuance of internatio na l travel documents for refugees ''lawfully staying'' in a country's territory, mandates that every person who might qualify for statutory withho ld ing must also be granted asylum. Garcia, 856 F.3d at 42; R-S-C, 869 F.3d at 1188. IV. Re gulatory Change s A. Limitation on Eligibility for Asylum for Alie ns Who Contrave ne a Pre side ntial Proclamation unde r Se ction 212(f) or 215(a)(1) of the INA Conce rning the Southe rn Borde r
24 Pursuant to section 208(b)(2)(C) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(2)(C), the Departments are revising 8 CFR 208.13(c) and 8 CFR 1208.13(c) to add a new mandatory bar on eligib ility for asylum for certain aliens who are subject to a presidentia l proclamatio n suspending or imposing limitatio ns on their entry into the United States pursuant to section 212(f) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1182(f), or section 215(a)(1) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1185(a)(1), and who enter the United States in contraventio n of such a proclamatio n after the effective date of this rule. The bar would be subject to several further limitatio ns: (1) the bar would apply only prospectively, to aliens who enter the United States after the effective date of such a proclamatio n; (2) the proclamatio n must concern entry at the southern border; and (3) the bar on asylum eligib ility would not apply if the proclamatio n expressly disclaims affecting asylum eligib ility for aliens within its scope, or expressly provides for a waiver or exception that entitle s the alien to relief from the limitatio n on entry imposed by the proclamatio n. The President has both statutory and inherent constitutio na l authority to suspend the entry of aliens into the United States when it is in the national interest. See United States ex rel. Knauff v. Shaughnessy, 338 U.S. 537, 542 (1950) (''The exclusio n of aliens is a fundame nta l act of sovereignty'' that derives from ''legislative power'' and also ''is inherent in the executive power to control the foreign affairs of the nation.''); see also Proposed Interdiction of Haitian Flag Vessels, 5 Op. O.L.C. 242, 244''45 (1981) (''[T]he sovereignty of the Nation, which is the basis of our ability to exclude all aliens, is lodged in both politica l branches of the governme nt, '' and even without congressiona l action, the President may ''act to protect the United States from massive illega l immigratio n. '').
25 Congress, in the INA, has expressly vested the President with broad authority to restrict the ability of aliens to enter the United States. Section 212(f) states: ''Whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimenta l to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamatio n, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigra nts or nonimmigra nts, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictio ns he may deem to be appropriate.'' 8 U.S.C. 1182(f). ''By its plain langua ge, [8 U.S.C.] § 1182(f) grants the President broad discretion to suspend the entry of aliens into the United States,'' includ ing the authority ''to impose additiona l limita tio ns on entry beyond the grounds for exclusio n set forth in the INA.'' Trump v . Hawaii, 138 S. Ct. 2392, 240812 (2018). For instance, the Supreme Court considered it ''perfectly clear that 8 U.S.C. § 1182(f) . . . grants the President ample power to establish a naval blockade that would simply deny illega l Haitian immigra nts the ability to disembark on our shores,'' thereby preventing them from entering the United States and applying for asylum. Sale v . Haitian Ctrs. Council, Inc., 509 U.S. 155, 187 (1993). The President's broad authority under section 212(f) is buttressed by section 215(a)(1), which states it shall be unlawful ''for any alien to depart from or enter or attempt to depart from or enter the United States except under such reasonable rules, regulatio ns, and orders, and subject to such limitatio ns and exceptions as the President may prescribe.'' 8 U.S.C. 1185(a)(1). The presidentia l orders that the Supreme Court upheld in Sale were promulgated pursuant to both sections 212(f) and 215(a)(1)'--see 509 U.S. at 172 & n.27; see also Exec. Order 12807 (May 24, 1992) (''Interd ictio n of Illega l Aliens''); Exec. Order 12324 (Sept. 29, 1981) (''Interdic tio n of Illega l Aliens'') (revoked
26 and replaced by Exec. Order 12807)'--as was the proclamatio n upheld in Trump v . Hawaii, see 138 S. Ct. at 2405. Other presidentia l orders have solely cited section 215(a)(1) as authority. See, e.g., Exec. Order 12172 (Nov. 26, 1979) (''Delegatio n of Authority With Respect to Entry of Certain Aliens Into the United States'') (invoking section 215(a)(1) with respect to certain Iranian visa holders). An alien whose entry is suspended or limited by a proclamatio n is one whom the President has determined should not enter the United States, or only should do so under certain conditions. Such an order authorizes measures designed to prevent such aliens from arriving in the United States as a result of the President's determinatio n that it would be against the nationa l interest for them to do so. For example, the proclamatio n and order that the Supreme Court upheld in Sale, Proc. 4865 (Sept. 29, 1981) (''High Seas Interdictio n of Illega l Aliens''); Exec. Order 12324, directed the Coast Guard to interdict the boats of tens of thousands of migra nts fleeing Haiti to prevent them from reaching U.S. shores, where they could make claims for asylum. The order further authorized the Coast Guard to intercept any vessel believed to be transporting undocume nted aliens to the United States, ''[t]o make inquiries of those on board, examine documents, and take such actions as are necessary to carry out this order,'' and ''[t]o return the vessel and its passengers to the country from which it came, or to another country, when there is reason to believe that an offense is being committed against the United States immigratio n laws.'' Exec. Order 12807, sec. 2(c). An alien whose entry is suspended or restricted under such a proclamatio n, but who nonetheless reaches U.S. soil contrary to the President's determina tio n that the alien should not be in the United States, would remain subject to various procedures under
27 immigra tio n laws. For instance, an alien subject to a proclamatio n who neverthe less entered the country in contraventio n of its terms generally would be placed in expedited-removal proceedings under section 235 of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1225, and those proceedings would allow the alien to raise any claims for protection before being removed from the United States, if appropriate. Furthermore, the asylum statute provides that ''[a]ny alien who is physica lly present in the United States or who arrives in the United States (whether or not at a designated port of arrival), '' and ''irrespective of such alien's status, may apply for asylum in accordance with this section or, where applicable, [8 U.S.C.] 1225(b).'' INA 208(a)(1), 8 U.S.C. 1158(a)(1). Some past proclamatio ns have accordingly made clear that aliens subject to an entry bar may still apply for asylum if they have nonetheless entered the United States. See, e.g., Proc. 9645, sec. 6(e) (Sept. 24, 2017) (''Enha nc ing Vetting Capabilitie s and Processes for Detecting Attempted Entry Into the United States by Terrorists or Other Public-Safety Threats'') (''Nothing in this proclamatio n shall be construed to limit the ability of an individ ua l to seek asylum, refugee status, withho ld ing of removal, or protection under the Conventio n Against Torture, consistent with the laws of the United States.''). As noted above, however, the asylum statute also authorizes the Attorney General and Secretary ''by regulatio n'' to ''establish additiona l limitatio ns and conditions, consistent with [section 208 of the INA], under which an alien shall be ineligib le for asylum,'' INA 208(b)(2)(C), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(2)(C), and to set conditions or limita tio ns on the consideratio n of an applicatio n for asylum, INA 208(d)(5)(B), 8 U.S.C. 1158(d)(5)(B). The Attorney General and the Secretary have determined that this authority should be exercised to render ineligib le for a grant of asylum any alien who is
28 subject to a proclamatio n suspending or restricting entry along the southern border with Mexico, but who nonetheless enters the United States after such a proclamatio n goes into effect. Such an alien would have engaged in actions that undermine a particularized determinatio n in a proclamatio n that the President judged as being required by the nationa l interest: that the alien should not enter the United States. The basis for ineligib ility in these circumsta nces would be the Departments' conclusio n that aliens who contravene such proclamatio ns should not be eligib le for asylum. Such proclamatio ns generally reflect sensitive determina tio ns regarding foreign relations and nationa l security that Congress recognized should be entrusted to the President. See Trump v. Hawaii, 138 S. Ct. at 2411. Aliens who contravene such a measure have not merely violated the immigratio n laws, but have also undercut the efficac y of a measure adopted by the President based upon his determina tio n of the nationa l interest in matters that could have significa nt implicatio ns for the foreign affairs of the United States. For instance, previous proclamatio ns were directed solely at Haitian migrants, nearly all of whom were already inadmissib le by virtue of other provisio ns of the INA, but the proclamatio n suspended entry and authorized further measures to ensure that such migra nts did not enter the United States contrary to the President's determinatio n. See, e.g., Proc. 4865; Exec. Order 12807. In the case of the southern border, a proclamatio n that suspended the entry of aliens who crossed between the ports of entry would address a pressing national problem concerning the immigratio n system and our foreign relations with neighboring countries. Even if most of those aliens would already be inadmissib le under our laws, the proclamatio n would impose limita tio ns on entry for the period of the suspension against a
29 particular class of aliens defined by the President. That judgment would reflect a determinatio n that certain ille ga l entrants'--na me ly, those crossing between the ports of entry on the southern border during the duration of the proclamatio n'--were a source of particular concern to the nationa l interest. Furthermore, such a proclamatio n could authorize additiona l measures to prevent the entry of such inadmissib le aliens, again reflecting the national concern with this subset of inadmissib le aliens. The interim fina l rule reflects the Departments' judgment that, under the extraordinary circumsta nces presented here, aliens crossing the southern border in contraventio n of such a proclamatio n should not be eligib le for a grant of asylum during the period of suspension or limitatio n on entry. The result would be to channel to ports of entry aliens who seek to enter the United States and assert an intentio n to apply for asylum or a fear of persecution, and to provide for consideratio n of those statements there. Significa ntly, this bar to eligib ility for a grant of asylum would be limited in scope. This bar would apply only prospective ly. This bar would further apply only to a proclamatio n concerning entry along the southern border, because this interim rule reflects the need to facilitate urgent action to address current conditio ns at that border. This bar would not apply to any proclamatio n that expressly disclaimed an effect on eligib ility for asylum. And this bar would not affect an applicant who is granted a waiver or is excepted from the suspension under the relevant proclamatio n, or an alien who did not at any time enter the United States after the effective date of such proclamatio n. Aliens who enter in contraventio n of a proclamatio n will not, however, overcome the eligib ility bar merely because a proclamatio n has subsequently ceased to have effect. The alien still would have entered notwithsta nd ing a proclamatio n at the time the alien
30 entered the United States, which would result in ineligib ility for asylum (but not for statutory withho ld ing or for CAT protection). Retaining eligib ility for asylum for aliens who entered the United States in contraventio n of the proclamatio n, but evaded detection until it had ceased, could encourage aliens to take riskier measures to evade detection between ports of entry, and would continue to stretch governme nt resources dedicated to apprehension efforts. This restrictio n on eligib ility to asylum is consistent with section 208(a)(1) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1158(a)(1). The regulatio n establishes a conditio n on asylum eligib ility, not on the ability to apply for asylum. Compare INA 208(a), 8 U.S.C. 1158(a) (describing conditions for applying for asylum), with INA 208(b), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b) (identifying exceptions and bars to granting asylum). And, as applied to a proclamatio n that suspends the entry of aliens who crossed between the ports of entry at the southern border, the restrictio n would not preclude an alien physically present in the United States from being granted asylum if the alien arrives in the United States through any border other than the southern land border with Mexico or at any time other than during the pendency of a proclamatio n suspending or limiting entry. B. Scre e ning Proce dure s in Expe dite d Re moval for Alie ns Subje ct to Proclamations The rule would also modify certain aspects of the process for screening claims for protection asserted by aliens who have entered in contraventio n of a proclamatio n and who are subject to expedited removal under INA 235(b)(1), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1). Under current procedures, aliens who unlawfully enter the United States may avoid being removed on an expedited basis by making a threshold showing of a credible fear of
31 persecution at an initia l screening intervie w. At present, those aliens are often released into the interio r of the United States pending adjudicatio n of such claims by an immigra tio n court in section 240 proceedings, especially if those aliens travel as family units. Once an alien is released, adjudicatio ns can take months or years to complete because of the increasing volume of claims and the need to expedite cases in which aliens have been detained. The Departments expect that a substantia l proportion of aliens subject to an entry proclamatio n concerning the southern border would be subject to expedited removal, since approximate ly 234,534 aliens in FY 2018 who presented at a port of entry or were apprehended at the border were referred to expedited-remo va l proceedings.1 The procedural changes within expedited removal would be confined to aliens who are ineligib le for asylum because they are subject to a regulatory bar for contravening an entry proclamatio n. 1. Under existing law, expedited-remova l procedures'--streamlined procedures for expeditiously reviewing claims and removing certain aliens'--app ly to those individ ua ls who arrive at a port of entry or those who have entered illega lly and are encountered by an immigratio n officer within 100 miles of the border and within 14 days of entering. See INA 235(b), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b); Designating Aliens For Expedited Removal, 69 FR 48877, 48880 (Aug. 11, 2004). To be subject to expedited removal, an alien must also be inadmissib le under INA 212(a)(6)(C) or (a)(7), 8 U.S.C. 1182(a)(6)(C) or (a)(7), meaning that the alien has either tried to procure documentatio n through 1 As noted below, in FY 2018, approximate ly 171,511 aliens entered ille ga lly between ports of entry, were apprehended by CBP, and were placed in expedited removal. Approximate ly 59,921 inadmissib le aliens arrived at ports of entry and were placed in expedited removal. Furthermore, ICE arrested some 3,102 aliens and placed them in expedited removal.
32 misrepresentatio n or lacks such documentatio n altogether. Thus, an alien encountered in the interior of the United States who entered in contraventio n of a proclamatio n and who is not otherwise amenable to expedited removal would be placed in proceedings under section 240 of the INA. The interim rule does not invite comment on existing regulatio ns imple me nting the present scope of expedited removal. Section 235(b)(1) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1), prescribes procedures in the expedited-remova l context for screening an alien's eligib ility for asylum. When these provisions were being debated in 1996, legisla tors expressed particular concern that ''[e]xisting procedures to deny entry to and to remove ille ga l aliens from the United States are cumbersome and duplicative, '' and that ''[t]he asylum system has been abused by those who seek to use it as a means of 'backdoor' immigratio n. '' See H.R. Rep. No. 104469, pt. 1, at 107 (1996). Members of Congress accordingly described the purpose of expedited removal and related procedures as ''streamlin[ing] rules and procedures in the Immigratio n and Nationality Act to make it easier to deny admissio n to inadmissib le aliens and easier to remove deportable aliens from the United States.'' Id. at 157; see Am. Immigration Lawyers Ass'n v . Reno, 18 F. Supp. 2d 38, 41 (D.D.C. 1998), aff'd, 199 F.3d 1352 (D.C. Cir. 2000) (rejecting several constitutio na l challenges to IIRIRA and describing the expedited-remo va l process as a ''summary removal process for adjudicating the claims of aliens who arrive in the United States without proper documentatio n''). Congress thus provided that aliens ''inadmissib le under [8 U.S.C.] 1182(a)(6)(C) or 1182(a)(7)'' shall be ''removed from the United States without further hearing or review unless the alien indicates either an intentio n to apply for asylum under [8 U.S.C.
33 1158] or a fear of persecution. '' INA 235(b)(1)(A)(i), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1)(A)(i); see INA 235(b)(1)(A)(ii), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1)(A)(ii) (such aliens shall be referred ''for an interview by an asylum officer''). On its face, the statute refers only to proceedings to establish eligib ility for an affirma tive grant of asylum and its attendant benefits, not to statutory withho ld ing of removal or CAT protection against removal to a particular country. An alien referred for a credible-fear interview must demonstrate a ''credible fear,'' defined as a ''significa nt possibility, taking into account the credibility of the statements made by the alien in support of the alien's claim and such other facts as are known to the officer, that the alien could establish eligib ility for asylum under [8 U.S.C. 1158].'' INA 235(b)(1)(B)(v), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1)(B)(v). According to the House report, ''[t]he credible-fear standard [wa]s designed to weed out non-merito rio us cases so that only applicants with a likelihood of success will proceed to the regular asylum process.'' H.R. Rep. No. 10469, at 158. If the asylum officer determines that the alien lacks a credible fear, then the alien may request review by an immigratio n judge. INA 235(b)(1)(B)(iii)(III), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1)(B)(iii)(III). If the immigratio n judge concurs with the asylum officer's negative credible-fear determinatio n, then the alien shall be removed from the United States without further review by either the Board or the courts. INA 235(b)(1)(B)(iii)(I), (b)(1)(C), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1)(B)(iii)(I), (b)(1)(C); INA 242(a)(2)(A)(iii), (e)(5), 8 U.S.C. 1252(a)(2)(A)(iii), (e)(5); Pena v . Lynch, 815 F.3d 452, 457 (9th Cir. 2016). By contrast, if the asylum officer or immigra tio n judge determines that the alien has a credible fear'--i.e., ''a significa nt possibility . . . that the alien could establish eligib ility
34 for asylum, '' INA 235(b)(1)(B)(v), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1)(B)(v)'--the n the alien, under current regulatio ns, is placed in section 240 proceedings for a full hearing before an immigra tio n judge, with appeal availab le to the Board and review in the federal courts of appeals, see INA 235(b)(1)(B)(ii), (b)(2)(A), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1)(B)(ii), (b)(2)(A); INA 242(a), 8 U.S.C. 1252(a); 8 CFR 208.30(e)(5), 1003.1. The interim rule does not invite comment on existing regulatio ns imple me nting this framework. By contrast, section 235 of the INA is silent regarding procedures for the granting of statutory withho ld ing of removal and CAT protection; indeed, section 235 predates the legislatio n directing impleme nta tio n of U.S. obligatio ns under Article 3 of the CAT. See Foreign Affairs Reform and Restructuring Act of 1998, Pub. L. 105277, sec. 2242(b) (requiring imple me ntatio n of CAT); IIRIRA, Pub. L. 104208, sec. 302 (revising section 235 of the INA to include procedures for dealing with inadmissib le aliens who intend to apply for asylum). The legal standards for ultimate ly granting asylum on the merits versus statutory withho ld ing or CAT protection are also differe nt. Asylum requires an applicant to ultimate ly establish a ''well-fo unded fear'' of persecution, which has been interpreted to mean a ''reasonable possibility'' of persecution'--a ''more generous'' standard than the ''clear probability'' of persecution or torture standard that applies to statutory withho ld ing or CAT protection. See INS v . Stev ic, 467 U.S. 407, 425, 429''30 (1984); Santosa v . Muk asey, 528 F.3d 88, 92 & n.1 (1st Cir. 2008); compare 8 CFR 1208.13(b)(2)(i)(B) with 8 CFR 1208.16(b)(2), (c)(2). As a result, applicants who establish eligib ility for asylum are not necessarily eligib le for statutory withho ld ing or CAT protection.
35 Current regulatio ns instruct USCIS adjudicators and immigratio n judges to treat an alien's request for asylum in expedited-remo va l proceedings under section 1225(b) as a request for statutory withho ld ing and CAT protection as well. See 8 CFR 208.3(b), 208.30(e)(2)''(4), 1208.3(b), 1208.16(a). In the context of expedited-remova l proceedings, ''credible fear of persecution'' is defined to mean a ''significa nt possibility'' that the alien ''could establish eligib ility for asylum under section 1158,'' not CAT or statutory withho ld ing. INA 235(b)(1)(B)(v), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1)(B)(v). Regulatio ns neverthe less have generally provided that aliens in expedited removal should be subject to the same process for considering statutory withho ld ing of removal claims under INA 241(b)(3), 8 U.S.C. 1231(b)(3), and claims for protection under the CAT, as they are for asylum claims. See 8 CFR 208.30(e)(2)''(4). Thus, when the Immigra tio n and Naturalizatio n Service provided for claims for statutory withho ld ing of removal and CAT protection to be considered in the same expedited-remova l proceedings as asylum, the result was that if an alien showed that there was a significa nt possibility of establishing eligib ility for asylum and was therefore referred for removal proceedings under section 240 of the INA, any potential statutory withho ld ing and CAT claims the alien might have were referred as well. This was done on the assumption that that it would not ''disrupt the streamlined process established by Congress to circumve nt meritle ss claims. '' Regulatio ns Concerning the Conventio n Against Torture, 64 FR 8478, 8485 (Feb. 19, 1999). But while the INA authorize s the Attorney General and Secretary to provide for consideratio n of statutory withho ld ing and CAT claims together with asylum claims or other matters that may be considered in
36 removal proceedings, the INA does not require that approach, see Foti v. INS, 375 U.S. 217, 229''30 & n.16 (1963), or that they be considered in the same way. Since 1999, regulatio ns also have provided for a distinc t ''reasonable fear'' screening process for certain aliens who are categorically ineligib le for asylum and can thus make claims only for statutory withho ld ing or CAT protections. See 8 CFR 208.31. Specifica lly, if an alien is subject to having a previous order of removal reinstated or is a non-permanent resident alien subject to an administra tive order of removal resulting from an aggravated felony convictio n, then he is categorically ineligib le for asylum. See id. § 208.31(a), (e). Such an alien can be placed in withho ld ing-only proceedings to adjudicate his statutory withho ld ing or CAT claims, but only if he first establishes a ''reasonable fear'' of persecution or torture through a screening process that tracks the credible-fear process. See id. § 208.31(c), (e). Reasonable fear is defined by regulatio n to mean a ''reasonable possibility that [the alien] would be persecuted on account of his or her race, religio n, nationality, membership in a particular social group or politica l opinion, or a reasonable possibility that he or she would be tortured in the country of removal. '' Id. § 208.31(c). ''This . . . screening process is modeled on the credible-fear screening process, but requires the alien to meet a higher screening standard.'' Regulatio ns Concerning the Conventio n Against Torture, 64 FR at 8485; see also Garcia v . Johnson, No. 14-CV-01775, 2014 WL 6657591, at *2 (N.D. Cal. Nov. 21, 2014) (describing the aim of the regulatio ns as providing ''fair and effic ie nt procedures'' in reasonable-fear screening that would comport with U.S. internatio na l obligatio ns). Significa ntly, when establishing the reasonable-fear screening process, DOJ explained that the two affected categories of aliens should be screened based on the
37 higher reasonable-fear standard because, ''[u]nlike the broad class of arriving aliens who are subject to expedited removal, these two classes of aliens are ineligib le for asylum, '' and may be entitled only to statutory withho ld ing of removal or CAT protection. Regulatio ns Concerning the Convention Against Torture, 64 FR at 8485. ''Because the standard for showing entitle me nt to these forms of protection (a probability of persecution or torture) is significa ntly higher than the standard for asylum (a well-founded fear of persecution), the screening standard adopted for initia l consideratio n of withho ld ing and deferral requests in these contexts is also higher.'' Id. 2. Drawing on the established framework for considering whether to grant withho ld ing of removal or CAT protection in the reasonable-fear context, this interim rule establishes a bifurcated screening process for aliens subject to expedited removal who are ineligib le for asylum by virtue of entering in contraventio n of a proclamatio n, but who express a fear of return or seek statutory withho ld ing or CAT protection. The Attorney General and Secretary have broad authority to imple me nt the immigra tio n laws, see INA 103, 8 U.S.C. 1103, includ ing by establishing regulatio ns, see INA 103, 8 U.S.C. 1103(a)(3), and to regulate ''conditio ns or limita tio ns on the consideratio n of an applicatio n for asylum, '' id. 1158(d)(5)(B). Furthermore, the Secretary has the authority'--in her ''sole and unreviewab le discretion, '' the exercise of which may be ''modified at any time'''--to designate additiona l categories of aliens that will be subject to expedited-remo va l procedures, so long as the designated aliens have not been admitted or paroled nor continuo usly present in the United States for two years. INA 235(b)(1)(A)(iii), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1)(A)(iii). The Departments have frequently invoked these authorities to establish or modify procedures affecting aliens in expedited-remo va l
38 proceedings, as well as to adjust the categories of aliens subject to particula r procedures within the expedited-remo va l framework.2 This rule does not change the credible-fear standard for asylum claims, although the regulatio n would expand the scope of the inquiry in the process. An alien who is subject to a relevant proclamatio n and nonetheless has entered the United States after the effective date of such a proclamatio n in contraventio n of that proclamatio n would be ineligib le for asylum and would thus not be able to establish a ''significa nt possibility . . . [of] eligib ility for asylum under section 1158.'' INA 235(b)(1)(B)(v), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1)(B)(v). As current USCIS guidance explains, under the credible-fear standard, ''[a] claim that has no possibility, or only a minima l or mere possibility, of success, would not meet the 'signific a nt possibility' standard.'' USCIS, Office of Refugee, Asylum, & Int'l Operations, Asylum Div., Asylum Officer Basic Training Course, Lesson Plan on Credible Fear at 15 (Feb. 13, 2017). Consistent with section 235(b)(1)(B)(iii)(III) of the INA, the alien could still obtain review from an immigratio n judge regarding whether the asylum officer correctly determined that the alien was subject to a limitatio n or suspension on entry imposed by a proclamatio n. Further, consistent with section 235(b)(1)(B) of the INA, if the immigratio n judge reversed the asylum officer's determinatio n, the alien could assert the asylum claim in section 240 proceedings. 2 See, e.g., Eliminating Exception to Expedited Removal Authority for Cuban Nationals Arriving by Air, 82 FR 4769 (Jan. 17, 2017); Designating Aliens For Expedited Removal, 69 FR 48877; Impleme nta tio n of the Agreement Between the Government of the United States of America and the Governme nt of Canada Regarding Asylum Claims Made in Transit and at Land Border Ports-of-Entry, 69 FR 10620 (March 8, 2004); New Rules Regarding Procedures for Asylum and Withhold ing of Removal, 63 FR 31945 (June 11, 1998); Asylum Procedures, 65 FR 76121; Regulatio ns Concerning the Conventio n Against Torture, 64 FR 8478 (Feb. 19, 1999).
39 Aliens determined to be ineligib le for asylum by virtue of contravening a proclamatio n, however, would still be screened, but in a manner that reflects that their only viable claims would be for statutory withho ld ing or CAT protection pursuant to 8 CFR 208.30(e)(2)''(4) and 1208.16(a). After determining the alien's ineligib ility for asylum under the credible-fear standard, the asylum officer would apply the long-established reasonable-fear standard to assess whether further proceedings on a possible statutory withho ld ing or CAT protection claim are warranted. If the asylum officer determined that the alien had not established the requisite reasonable fear, the alien then could seek review of that decision from an immigratio n judge (just as the alien may under existing 8 CFR 208.30 and 208.31), and would be subject to removal only if the immigra tio n judge agreed with the negative reasonable-fear finding. Conversely, if either the asylum officer or the immigratio n judge determined that the alien cleared the reasonable-fear threshold, the alien would be put in section 240 proceedings, just like aliens who receive a positive credible-fear determinatio n for asylum. Employing a reasonable-fear standard in this context, for this category of ineligib le aliens, would be consistent with the Department of Justice's longstand ing rationale that ''aliens ineligib le for asylum, '' who could only be granted statutory withho ld ing of removal or CAT protection, should be subject to a different screening standard that would correspond to the higher bar for actually obtaining these forms of protection. See Regulatio ns Concerning the Conventio n Against Torture, 64 FR at 8485 (''Because the standard for showing entitle me nt to these forms of protection . . . is significa ntly higher than the standard for asylum . . . the screening standard adopted for initia l consideratio n of withho ld ing and deferral requests in these contexts is also higher. '').
40 The screening process established by the interim rule will accordingly proceed as follows. For an alien subject to expedited removal, DHS will ascertain whether the alien seeks protection, consistent with INA 235(b)(1)(A)(ii), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1)(A)(ii). All aliens seeking asylum, statutory withhold ing of removal, or CAT protection will continue to go before an asylum officer for screening, consistent with INA 235(b)(1)(B), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1)(B). The asylum officer will ask threshold questions to elicit whether an alien is ineligib le for a grant of asylum pursuant to a proclamatio n entry bar. If there is a significa nt possibility that the alien is not subject to the eligib ility bar (and the alien otherwise demonstrates suffic ie nt facts pertaining to asylum eligib ility), then the alien will have established a credible fear. If, however, an alien lacks a significa nt possibility of eligib ility for asylum because of the proclamatio n bar, then the asylum officer will make a negative credible-fear finding. The asylum officer will then apply the reasonable-fear standard to assess the alien's claims for statutory withho ld ing of removal or CAT protection. An alien subject to the proclamatio n-based asylum bar who clears the reasonable-fear screening standard will be placed in section 240 proceedings, just as an alien who clears the credible-fear standard will be. In those proceedings, the alien will also have an opportunity to raise whether the alien was correctly identified as subject to the proclamatio n ineligib ility bar to asylum, as well as other claims. If an immigra tio n judge determines that the alien was incorrectly identified as subject to the proclamatio n, the alien will be able to apply for asylum. Such aliens can appeal the immigratio n judge's decision in these proceedings to the BIA and then seek review from a federal court of appeals.
41 Conversely, an alien who is found to be subject to the proclamatio n asylum bar and who does not clear the reasonable-fear screening standard can obtain review of both of those determina tio ns before an immigra tio n judge, just as immigratio n judges currently review negative credible-fear and reasonable-fear determina tio ns. If the immigratio n judge finds that either determinatio n was incorrect, then the alien will be placed into section 240 proceedings. In reviewing the determinatio ns, the immigratio n judge will decide de novo whether the alien is subject to the proclamatio n asylum bar. If, however, the immigratio n judge affirms both determinatio ns, then the alien will be subject to removal without further appeal, consistent with the existing process under section 235 of the INA. In short, aliens subject to the proclamatio n eligib ility bar to asylum will be processed through existing procedures by DHS and EOIR in accordance with 8 CFR 208.30 and 1208.30, but will be subject to the reasonable-fear standard as part of those procedures with respect to their statutory withho ld ing and CAT protection claims.3 2. The above process will not affect the process in 8 CFR 208.30(e)(5) for certain existing statutory bars to asylum eligib ility. Under that regulatory provisio n, many aliens who appear to fall within an existing statutory bar, and thus appear to be ineligib le for asylum, can nonethe less be placed in section 240 proceedings if they are otherwise eligib le for asylum and obtain immigra tio n judge review of their asylum claims, followed 3 Nothing about this screening process or in this interim rule would alter the existing procedures for processing alien stowaways under the INA and associated regulatio ns. An alien stowaway is unlike ly to be subject to 8 CFR 208.13(c)(3) and 1208.13(c)(3) unless a proclamatio n specifica lly applies to stowaways or to entry by vessels or aircraft. INA 101(a)(49), 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(49). Moreover, an alien stowaway is barred from being placed into section 240 proceedings regardless of the level of fear of persecution he establishes. INA 235(a)(2), 8 U.S.C. 1225(a)(2). Similarly, despite the incorporatio n of a reasonable-fear standard into the evaluatio n of certain cases under credible-fear procedures, nothing about this screening process or in this interim rule implica tes existing reasonable-fear procedures in 8 CFR 208.31 and 1208.31.
42 by further review before the BIA and the courts of appeals. Specifica lly, with the exceptions of stowaways and aliens entering from Canada at a port of entry (who are generally ineligib le to apply for asylum by virtue of a safe-third-country agreement), 8 CFR 208.30(e)(5) provides that ''if an alien is able to establish a credible fear of persecution or torture but appears to be subject to one or more of the mandatory bars to applying for, or being granted, asylum contained in section 208(a)(2) and 208(b)(2) of the [INA] . . . [DHS] shall nonethele ss place the alien in proceedings under section 240 of the [INA] for full consideratio n of the alien's claim.'' The langua ge providing that the agency ''shall nonethele ss place the alien in proceedings under section 240 of the [INA]'' was promulgated in 2000 in a final rule imple me nting asylum procedures after the 1996 enactment of IIRIRA. See Asylum Procedures, 65 FR at 76137. The explanatio n for this change was that some commenters suggested that aliens should be referred to section 240 proceedings ''regardless of any apparent statutory ineligib ility under section 208(a)(2) or 208(b)(2)(A) of the [INA]. The Department has adopted that suggestio n and has so amended the regulatio n. '' Id. at 76129. This rule will avoid a textual ambiguity in 8 CFR 208.30(e)(5), which is unclear regarding its scope, by adding a new sentence clarifying the process applicable to an alien barred under a covered proclamatio n. See 8 CFR 208.30(e)(5) (referring to an alien who ''appears to be subject to one or more of the mandatory bars to . . . asylum contained in section 208(a)(2) and 208(b)(2) of the [INA]''). By using a definite article (''the mandatory bars to . . . asylum'') and the phrase ''contained in,'' 8 CFR 208.30(e)(5) may refer only to aliens who are subject to the defined mandatory bars ''contained in'' specific
43 parts of section 208 of the INA, such as the bar for aggravated felons, INA 208(b)(2)(B)(i), 8 U.S.C. 1558(b)(2)(B)(i), or the bar for aliens reasonably believed to be a danger to U.S. security, INA 208(b)(2)(A)(iv), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(2)(A)(iv). It is thus not clear whether an alien subject to a further limita tio n or conditio n on asylum eligib ility adopted pursuant to section 208(b)(2)(C) of the INA would also be subject to the procedures set forth in 8 CFR 208.30(e)(5). Notably, the preamble to the final rule adopting 8 CFR 208.30(e)(5) indicated that it was intended to apply to ''any apparent statutory ineligib ility under section 208(a)(2) or 208(b)(2)(A) of the [INA],'' and did not address future regulatory ineligib ility under section 208(b)(2)(C) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(2)(C). Asylum Procedures, 65 FR at 76129. This rule does not resolve that question, however, but instead establishe s an express regulatory provisio n dealing specifica lly with aliens subject to a limitatio n under section 212(f) or 215(a)(1) of the INA. C. Anticipate d Effe cts of the Rule 1. The interim rule aims to address an urgent situatio n at the southern border. In recent years, there has been a significa nt increase in the number and percentage of aliens who seek admissio n or unlawfully enter the United States and then assert an intent to apply for asylum or a fear of persecution. The vast majority of such assertions for protection occur in the expedited-remo va l context, and the rates at which such aliens receive a positive credible-fear determinatio n have increased in the last five years. Having passed through the credible-fear screening process, many of these aliens are released into the interior to await further section 240 removal proceedings. But many aliens who pass through the credible-fear screening thereafter do not pursue their claims
44 for asylum. Moreover, a substantia l number fail to appear for a section 240 proceeding. And even aliens who passed through credible-fear screening and apply for asylum are granted it at a low rate. Recent numbers illustrate the scope and scale of the problems caused by the disconnect between the number of aliens asserting a credible fear and the number of aliens who ultimate ly are deemed eligib le for, and granted, asylum. In FY 2018, DHS identified some 612,183 inadmissib le aliens who entered the United States, of whom 404,142 entered unlawfully between ports of entry and were apprehended by CBP, and 208,041 presented themselves at ports of entry. Those numbers exclude the inadmissib le aliens who crossed but evaded detection, and interio r enforcement operations conducted by U.S. Immigratio n and Customs Enforceme nt (''ICE''). The vast majority of those inadmissib le aliens'--521,090'--crossed the southern border. Approximate ly 98% (396,579) of all aliens apprehended after ille ga lly crossing between ports of entry made their crossings at the southern border, and 76% of all encounters at the southern border reflect such apprehensio ns. By contrast, 124,511 inadmissib le aliens presented themselves at ports of entry along the southern border, representing 60% of all port traffic for inadmissib le aliens and 24% of encounters with inadmissib le aliens at the southern border. Nationwide, DHS has prelimina rily calculated that throughout FY 2018, approximate ly 234,534 aliens who presented at a port of entry or were apprehended at the border were referred to expedited-remova l proceedings. Of that total, approximate ly 171,511 aliens were apprehended crossing between ports of entry; approximate ly 59,921 were inadmissib le aliens who presented at ports of entry; and approximate ly 3,102 were
45 arrested by ICE and referred to expedited removal.4 The total number of aliens of all nationa lities referred to expedited-remo va l proceedings has significa ntly increased over the last decade, from 161,516 aliens in 2008 to approximate ly 234,534 in FY 2018 (an overall increase of about 45%). Of those totals, the number of aliens from the Northern Triangle referred to expedited-remo va l proceedings has increased from 29,206 in FY 2008 (18% of the total 161,516 aliens referred) to approximate ly 103,752 in FY 2018 (44% of the total approximate ly 234,534 aliens referred, an increase of over 300%). In FY 2018, nationa ls of the Northern Triangle represented approximate ly 103,752 (44%) of the aliens referred to expedited-remova l proceedings; approximate ly 91,235 (39%) were Mexican; and nationals from other countries made up the remaining balance (17%). As of the date of this rule, final expedited-remo va l statistics for FY 2018 specific to the southern border are not availab le. But the Departments' experience with immigratio n enforceme nt has demonstrated that the vast majority of expedited-remova l actions have also occurred along the southern border. Once in expedited removal, some 97,192 (approximate ly 41% of all aliens in expedited removal) were referred for a credible-fear intervie w with an asylum officer, either because they expressed a fear of persecution or torture or an intent to apply for protection. Of that number, 6,867 (7%) were Mexican nationals, 25,673 (26%) were 4 All references to the number of aliens subject to expedited removal in FY 2018 reflect data for the first three quarters of the year and projections for the fourth quarter of FY 2018. It is unclear whether the ICE arrests reflect additiona l numbers of aliens processed at ports of entry. Another approximate ly 130,211 aliens were subject to reinstate me nt, meaning that the alien had previously been removed and then unlawfully entered the United States again. The vast majority of reinstateme nts involved Mexican nationa ls. Aliens subject to reinstateme nt who express a fear of persecution or torture receive reasonable-fear determinatio ns under 8 CFR 208.31.
46 Honduran, 13,433 (14%) were Salvadoran, 24,456 (25%) were Guatema la n, and other nationa lities made up the remaining 28% (the largest proportion of which were 7,761 Indian nationals). In other words: approximate ly 61% of aliens from Northern Triangle countries placed in expedited removal expressed the intent to apply for asylum or a fear of persecution and triggered credible-fear proceedings in FY 2018 (approximate ly 69% of Hondurans, 79% of Salvadorans, and 49% of Guatemala ns). These aliens represented 65% of all credible-fear referrals in FY 2018. By contrast, only 8% of aliens from Mexico trigger credible-fear proceedings when they are placed in expedited removal, and Mexicans represented 7% of all credible-fear referrals. Other nationa lities compose the remaining 26,763 (28%) referred for credible-fear interviews. Once these 97,192 aliens were intervie wed by an asylum officer, 83,862 cases were decided on the merits (asylum officers closed the others).5 Those asylum officers found a credible fear in 89% (74,574) of decided cases'--meaning that almost all of those aliens' cases were referred on for further immigratio n proceedings under section 240, and many of the aliens were released into the interior while awaiting those proceedings.6 As 5 DHS sometimes calculates credible-fear grant rates as a proportion of all cases (positive, negative, and closed cases). Because this rule concerns the merits of the screening process and closed cases are not affected by that process, this preamble discusses the proportions of determina tio ns on the merits when describing the credible-fear screening process. This preamble does, however, account for the fact that some proportion of closed cases are also sent to section 240 proceedings when discussing the number of cases that immigra tio n judges completed involving aliens referred for a credible-fear interview while in expedited-remo va l proceedings. 6 Stowaways are the only category of aliens who would receive a positive credible-fear determinatio n and go to asylum-only proceedings, as opposed to section 240 proceedings, but the number of stowaways is very small. Between FY 2013 and FY 2017, an average
47 noted, nationals of Northern Triangle countries represent the bulk of credible-fear referrals (65%, or 63,562 cases where the alien expressed an intent to apply for asylum or asserted a fear). In cases where asylum officers decided whether nationals of these countries had a credible fear, they received a positive credible-fear finding 88% of the time.7 Moreover, when aliens from those countries sought review of negative findings by an immigra tio n judge, they obtained reversals approximate ly 18% of the time, resulting in some 47,507 cases in which nationals of Northern Triangle countries received positive credible-fear determinatio ns.8 In other words: aliens from Northern Triangle countries ultimate ly received a positive credible-fear determinatio n 89% of the time. Some 6,867 Mexican nationa ls were interviewed; asylum officers gave them a positive credible-fear of roughly 300 aliens per year were placed in asylum-only proceedings, and that number includes not only stowaways but all classes of aliens subject to asylum-only proceedings. 8 CFR 1208.2(c)(1) (describing 10 categories of aliens, includ ing stowaways found to have a credible fear, who are subject to asylum-only proceedings). 7 Asylum officers decided 53,205 of these cases on the merits and closed the remaining 10,357 (but sent many of the latter to section 240 proceedings). Specifica lly, 25,673 Honduran nationa ls were interviewed ; 21,476 of those resulted in a positive screening on the merits, 2,436 received a negative finding, and 1,761 were closed'--meaning that 90% of all Honduran cases involving a merits determinatio n resulted in a positive find ing, and 10% were denied. Some 13,433 Salvadoran nationals were intervie wed; 11,034 of those resulted in a positive screening on the merits 1,717 were denied, and 682 were closed'--meaning that 86% of all Salvadoran cases involving a merits determina tio n resulted in a positive finding, and 14% were denied. Some 24,456 Guatemala n nationa ls were interviewed; 14,183 of those resulted in a positive screening on the merits, 2,359 were denied, and 7,914 were closed'--meaning that 86% of all Guatemala n cases involving a merits determinatio n resulted in a positive finding, and 14% were denied. Again, the percentages exclude closed cases so as to describe how asylum officers make decisions on the merits. 8 Immigra tion judges in 2018 reversed 18% (288) of negative credible-fear determinatio ns involving Hondurans, 19% (241) of negative credible-fear determina tio ns involving Salvadorans, and 17% (285) of negative credible-fear determina tio ns involving Guatemala ns.
48 determinatio n in 81% of decided cases (4,261), and immigratio n judges reversed an additiona l 91 negative credible-fear determinatio ns, resulting in some 4,352 cases (83% of cases decided on the merits) in which Mexican nationa ls were referred to section 240 proceedings after receiving a positive credible-fear determinatio n. These figure s have enormous consequences for the asylum system writ large. Asylum officers and immigratio n judges devote significa nt resources to these screening interviews, which the INA requires to happen within a fixed statutory timefra me. These aliens must also be detained during the pendency of expedited-remova l proceedings. See INA 235(b), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b); Jennings v . Rodriguez, 138 S. Ct. 830, 834 (2018). And assertions of credible fear in expedited removal have rapidly grown in the last decade'--especially in the last five years. In FY 2008, for example, fewer than 5,000 aliens were in expedited removal (5%) and were thus referred for a credible-fear intervie w. In FY 2014, 51,001 referrals occurred (representing 21% of aliens in expedited removal). The credible-fear referral numbers today reflect a 190% increase from FY 2014 and a nearly 2000% increase from FY 2008. Furthermore, the percentage of cases in which asylum officers found that aliens had established a credible fear'--leading to the aliens being placed in section 240 removal proceedings'--ha s also increased in recent years. In FY 2008, asylum officers found a credible fear in about 3,200 (or 77%) of all cases. In FY 2014, asylum officers found a credible fear in about 35,000 (or 80%) of all cases in which they made a determina tio n. And in FY 2018, asylum officers found a credible fear in nearly 89% of all such cases. Once aliens are referred for section 240 proceedings, their cases may take months or years to adjudicate due to backlogs in the system. As of November 2, 2018, there were
49 approximate ly 203,569 total cases pending in the immigratio n courts that originated with a credible-fear referral'--or 26% of the total backlog of 791,821 removal cases. Of that number, 136,554 involved nationa ls of Northern Triangle countries (39,940 cases involving Hondurans; 59,702 involving Salvadoran nationa ls; 36,912 involving Guatemala n nationa ls). Another 10,736 cases involved Mexican nationals. In FY 2018, immigra tio n judges completed 34,158 total cases that originated with a credible-fear referral.9 Those aliens were likely referred for credible-fear screening between 2015 and 2018; the vast majority of these cases arose from positive credible-fear determinatio ns as opposed to the subset of cases that were closed in expedited removal and referred for section 240 proceedings. In a significa nt proportion of these cases, the aliens did not appear for section 240 proceedings or did not file an applicatio n for asylum in connectio n with those proceedings. In FY 2018, of the 34,158 completio ns that origina ted with a credible-fear referral, 24,361 (71%) were completed by an immigra tio n judge with the issuance of an order of removal. Of those completed cases, 10,534 involved in absentia removal orders, meaning that in approximate ly 31% of all initia l completio ns in FY 2018 that originated from a credible-fear referral, the alien failed to appear at a hearing. Moreover, of those 10,534 cases, there were 1,981 cases where an asylum applicatio n was filed, meaning 8,553 did not file an asylum applicatio n and failed 9 All descriptio ns of case outcomes before immigra tio n judges reflect initia l case completio ns by an immigratio n judge during the fiscal year unless otherwise noted. All references to applicatio ns for asylum generally involve applicatio ns for asylum, as opposed to some other form of protection, but EOIR statistics do not distinguish between, for instance, the filing of an applicatio n for asylum or the filing of an applicatio n for statutory withho ld ing. As noted, an applicatio n for asylum is also deemed an applicatio n for other forms of protection, and whether an applicatio n will be for asylum or only for some other form of protection is often a post-filing determina tio n made by the immigra tio n judge (for instance, because the one-year filing bar for asylum applies).
50 to appear at a hearing. Further, 40% of all initia l completio ns originating with a credible-fear referral (or 13,595 cases, includ ing the 8,553 aliens just discussed) were completed in FY 2018 without an alien filing an applicatio n for asylum. In short, in nearly half of the cases completed by an immigra tio n judge in FY 2018 involving aliens who passed through a credible-fear referral, the alien failed to appear at a hearing or failed to file an asylum applicatio n. Those figure s are consistent with trends from FY 2008 through FY 2018, during which time DHS pursued some 354,356 cases in the immigra tio n courts that involved aliens who had gone through a credible-fear review (i.e., the aliens received a positive credible-fear determinatio n or their closed case was referred for further proceedings). During this period, however, only about 53% (189,127) of those aliens filed an asylum applicatio n, despite the fact that they were placed into further immigra tio n proceedings under section 240 because they alleged a fear during expedited-remova l proceedings. Even among those aliens who received a credible-fear intervie w, filed for asylum, and appeared in section 240 proceedings to resolve their asylum claims'--a category that would logica lly include the aliens with the greatest confidence in the merits of their claims'--o nly a very small percentage received asylum. In FY 2018 immigra tio n judges completed 34,158 cases that originated with a credible-fear referral; only 20,563 of those cases involved an applicatio n for asylum, and immigra tio n judges granted only 5,639 aliens asylum. In other words, in FY 2018, less than about 6,000 aliens who passed through credible-fear screening (17% of all completed cases, 27% of all completed cases in which an asylum applicatio n was filed, and about 36% of cases where the asylum claim was adjudicated on the merits) established that they should be granted asylum. (An
51 additiona l 322 aliens received either statutory withho ld ing or CAT protection.) Because there may be multip le bases for denying an asylum applicatio n and immigratio n judges often make alternative findings for consideratio n of issues on appeal, EOIR does not track reasons for asylum denials by immigratio n judges at a granular level. Nevertheless, experience indicates that the vast majority of those asylum denials reflect a conclusio n that the alien failed to establish a significa nt possibility of persecution, rather than the effect of a bar to asylum eligib ility or a discretionary decision by an immigratio n judge to deny asylum to an alien who qualifie s as a refugee. The statistics for nationals of Northern Triangle countries are particularly illumina ting. In FY 2018, immigra tio n judges in section 240 proceedings adjudicated 20,784 cases involving nationa ls of Northern Triangle countries who were referred for credible-fear interviews and then referred to section 240 proceedings (i.e., they expressed a fear and either received a positive credible-fear determina tio n or had their case closed and referred to section 240 proceedings for an unspecified reason). Given that those aliens asserted a fear of persecution and progressed through credible-fear screening, those aliens presumably would have had the greatest reason to then pursue an asylum applicatio n. Yet in only about 54% of those cases did the alien file an asylum applicatio n. Furthermore, about 38% of aliens from Northern Triangle countries who were referred for credible-fear intervie ws and passed to section 240 proceedings did not appear, and were ordered removed in absentia. Put differe ntly: only a little over half of aliens from Northern Triangle countries who claimed a fear of persecution and passed threshold screening submitted an applicatio n for asylum, and over a third did not appear
52 at section 240 proceedings.10 And only 1,889 aliens from Northern Triangle countries were granted asylum, or approximate ly 9% of completed cases for aliens from Northern Triangle countries who received a credible-fear referral, 17% of the cases where such aliens filed asylum applicatio ns in their removal proceedings, and about 23% of cases where such aliens' asylum claims were adjudicated on the merits. Specifica lly, in FY 2018, 536 Hondurans, 408 Guatema la ns, and 945 Salvadorans who initia lly were referred for a credible-fear intervie w (whether in FY 2018 or earlier) and progressed to section 240 proceedings were granted asylum. The Departments thus believe that these numbers underscore the major costs and ineffic ienc ies of the current asylum system. Again, numbers for Northern Triangle nationa ls'--who represent the vast majority of aliens who claim a credible fear'--illumina te the scale of the problem. Out of the 63,562 Northern Triangle nationals who expressed an intent to apply for asylum or a fear of persecution and received credible-fear screening intervie ws in FY 2018, 47,507 received a positive credible-fear finding from the asylum officer or immigratio n judge. (Another 10,357 cases were administrative ly closed, some of which also may have been referred to section 240 proceedings.) Those 10 These percentages are even higher for particular nationa litie s. In FY 2018, immigra tio n judges adjudicated 7,151 cases involving Hondurans whose cases origina ted with a credible-fear referral in expedited-remova l proceedings. Of that 7,151, only 49% (3,509) filed an applicatio n for asylum, and 44% (3,167) had their cases completed with an in absentia removal order because they failed to appear. Similarly, immigratio n judges adjudicated 5,382 cases involving Guatemala ns whose cases origina ted with a credible-fear referral; only 46% (2,457) filed an asylum applicatio n, and 41% (2,218) received in absentia removal orders. The 8,251 Salvadoran cases had the highest rate of asylum applicatio ns (filed in 65% of cases, or 5,341), and 31% of the total cases (2,534) involved in absentia removal orders. Numbers for Mexican nationals reflected similar trends. In FY 2018, immigra tio n judges adjudicated 3,307 cases involving Mexican nationa ls who progressed to section 240 proceedings after being referred for a credible-fear interview; 49% of them filed applicatio ns for asylum in these proceedings, and 25% of the total cases resulted in an in absentia removal order.
53 aliens will remain in the United States to await section 240 proceedings while immigra tio n judges work through the current backlog of nearly 800,000 cases'--136,554 of which involve nationa ls of Northern Triangle countries who passed through credible-fear screening intervie ws. Immigratio n judges adjudicated 20,784 cases involving such nationa ls of Northern Triangle countries in FY 2018; slightly under half of those aliens did not file an applicatio n for asylum, and over a third were screened through expedited removal but did not appear for a section 240 proceeding. Even when nationa ls of Northern Triangle countries who passed through credible-fear screening applied for asylum (as 11,307 did in cases completed in FY 2018), immigratio n judges granted asylum to only 1,889, or 17% of the cases where such aliens filed asylum applicatio ns in their removal proceedings. Immigra tio n judges found in the overwhelming majority of cases that the aliens had no significa nt possibility of persecution. These existing burdens suggest an unsustainab ly ineffic ie nt process, and those pressures are now coupled with the prospect that large caravans of thousands of aliens, primarily from Central America, will seek to enter the United States unlawfully or without proper documentatio n and thereafter trigger credible-fear screening procedures and obtain release into the interior. The United States has been engaged in ongoing diplomatic negotiatio ns with Mexico and the Northern Triangle countries (Guatema la, El Salvador, and Honduras) about the problems on the southern border, but those negotiatio ns have, to date, proved unable to meaningfully improve the situatio n. 2. In combinatio n with a presidentia l proclamatio n directed at the crisis on the southern border, the rule would help ameliorate the pressures on the present system.
54 Aliens who could not establish a credible fear for asylum purposes due to the proclamatio n-based eligib ility bar could nonethe less seek statutory withho ld ing of removal or CAT protection, but would receive a positive finding only by establishing a reasonable fear of persecution or torture. In FY 2018, USCIS issued nearly 7,000 reasonable-fear determinatio ns (i.e., made a positive or negative determinatio n)'--a smaller number because the current determinatio ns are limited to the narrow categories of aliens described above. Of those determinatio ns, USCIS found a reasonable fear in 45% of cases in 2018, and 48% of cases in 2017. Negative reasonable-fear determina tio ns were then subject to further review, and immigratio n judges reversed approximate ly 18%. Even if rates of positive reasonable-fear findings increased when a more general population of aliens became subject to the reasonable-fear screening process, this process would better filte r those aliens eligib le for that form of protection. Even assuming that grant rates for statutory withho ld ing in the reasonable-fear screening process (a higher standard) would be the same as grant rates for asylum, this screening mechanism would likely still allow through a significa ntly higher percentage of cases than would likely be granted. And the reasonable-fear screening rates would also still allow a far greater percentage of claimants through than would ultima te ly receive CAT protection. Fewer than 1,000 aliens per year, of any nationality, receive CAT protection. To the extent that aliens continued to enter the United States in violatio n of a relevant proclamatio n, the applicatio n of the rule's bar to eligib ility for asylum in the credible-fear screening process (combined with the applicatio n of the reasonable-fear standard to statutory withho ld ing and CAT claims) would reduce the number of cases referred to section 240 proceedings. Finally, the Departments emphasize that this rule
55 would not prevent aliens with claims for statutory withho ld ing or CAT protection from having their claims adjudicated in section 240 proceedings after satisfying the reasonable-fear standard. Further, determining whether an alien is subject to a suspension of entry proclamatio n would ordinarily be straightforward, because such orders specify the class of aliens whose entry is restricted. Likewise, adding questions designed to elicit whether an alien is subject to an entry proclamatio n, and employing a bifurcated credible-fear analysis for the asylum claim and reasonable-fear review of the statutory withho ld ing and CAT claims, will likely not be unduly burdensome. Although DHS has generally not applied existing mandatory bars to asylum in credible-fear determinatio ns, asylum officers currently probe for this informatio n and note in the record where the possibility exists that a mandatory bar may apply. Though screening for proclamatio n-based ineligib ility for asylum may in some cases entail some additiona l work, USCIS will account for it under the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq., as needed, following issuance of a covered proclamatio n. USCIS asylum officers and EOIR immigra tio n judges have almost two decades of experience applying the reasonable-fear standard to statutory withho ld ing and CAT claims, and do so in thousands of cases per year already (13,732 in FY 2018 for both EOIR and USCIS). See, e.g., Memorandum for All Immigratio n Judges, et al., from The Office of the Chief Immigratio n Judge, Executive Office for Immigratio n Review at 6 (May 14, 1999) (explaining similarities between credible-fear and reasonable-fear proceedings for immigra tio n judges). That said, USCIS estimates that asylum officers have historic a lly averaged four to five credible-fear interviews and completio ns per day, but only two to three reasonable-
56 fear case completio ns per day. Comparing this against current case processing targets, and depending on the number of aliens who contravene a presidentia l proclamatio n, such a change might result in the need to increase the number of officers required to conduct credible-fear or reasonable-fear screenings to mainta in current case completio n goals. However, current reasonable-fear interviews are for types of aliens (aggravated felons and aliens subject to reinstate me nt) for whom relevant crimina l and immigratio n records take time to obtain, and for whom additiona l intervie wing and administrative processing time is typically required. The populatio n of aliens who would be subject to this rule would generally not have the same type of crimina l and immigra tio n records in the United States, but additiona l intervie wing time might be necessary. Therefore, it is unclear whether these averages would hold once the rule is imple me nted. If an asylum officer determines that credible fear has been established but for the existence of the proclamatio n bar, and the alien seeks review of such determinatio n before an immigra tio n judge, DHS may need to shift additiona l resources towards facilita ting such review in immigratio n court in order to provide records of the negative credible-fear determinatio n to the immigratio n court. However, ICE attorneys, while sometimes present, generally do not advocate for DHS in negative credible-fear or reasonable-fear reviews before an immigratio n judge. DHS would, however, also expend additiona l resources detaining aliens who would have previously received a positive credible-fear determinatio n and who now receive, and challe nge, a negative credible-fear and reasonable-fear determina tio n. Aliens are generally detained during the credible-fear screening, but may be eligib le for parole or release on bond if they establish a credible fear. To the extent that the rule may
57 result in lengthier interviews for each case, aliens' length of stay in detention would increase. Furthermore, DHS anticipa tes that more negative determina tio ns would increase the number of aliens who would be detained and the length of time they would be detained, since fewer aliens would be eligib le for parole or release on bond. Also, to the extent this rule would increase the number of aliens who receive both negative credible-fear and reasonable-fear determinatio ns, and would thus be subject to immed ia te removal, DHS will incur increased and more immed iate costs for enforceme nt and removal of these aliens. That cost would be counterbala nced by the fact that it would be considerably more costly and resource-inte nsive to ultimate ly remove such an alien after the end of section 240 proceedings, and the desirability of promoting greater enforcement of the immigra tio n laws. Attorneys from ICE represent DHS in full immigratio n proceedings, and immigra tio n judges (who are part of DOJ) adjudicate those proceedings. If fewer aliens are found to have credible fear or reasonable fear and referred to full immigra tio n proceedings, such a development will allow DOJ and ICE attorney resources to be reallocated to other immigratio n proceedings. The additiona l bars to asylum are unlike ly to result in immigratio n judges spending much additiona l time on each case where the nature of the proclamatio n bar is straightforward to apply. Further, there will likely be a decrease in the number of asylum hearings before immigratio n judges because certain respondents will no longer be eligib le for asylum and DHS will likely refer fewer cases to full immigra tio n proceedings. If DHS officers identify the proclamatio n-based bar to asylum (before EOIR has acquired jurisdic tio n over the case), EOIR anticipa tes a reduction in both in-court and out-of-court time for immigratio n judges.
58 A decrease in the number of credible-fear findings and, thus, asylum grants would also decrease the number of employme nt authoriza tio n documents processed by DHS. Aliens are generally eligib le to apply for and receive employme nt authoriza tio n and an Employme nt Authorizatio n Document (Form I-766) after their asylum claim has been pending for more than 180 days. See INA 208(d)(5)(A)(iii), 8 U.S.C. 1158(d)(5)(A)(iii); 8 CFR 1208.7(a)(1)(2). This rule and any associated future presidentia l proclamatio ns would also be expected to have a deterrent effect that could lessen future flows of illega l immigra tio n. 3. The Departments are not in a position to determine how all entry proclamatio ns involving the southern border could affect the decision calculus for various categories of aliens planning to enter the United States through the southern border in the near future. The focus of this rule is on the tens of thousands of aliens each year (97,192 in FY 2018) who assert a credible fear in expedited-remo va l proceedings and may thereby be placed on a path to release into the interior of the United States. The President has announced his intentio n to take executive action to suspend the entry of aliens between ports of entry and instead to channel such aliens to ports of entry, where they may seek to enter and assert an intent to apply for asylum in a controlled, orderly, and lawful manner. The Departments have accordingly assessed the anticipated effects of such a presidentia l action so as to illuminate how the rule would be applied in those circumsta nce s. a. Effects on Aliens. Such a proclamatio n, coupled with this rule, would have the most direct effect on the more than approximate ly 70,000 aliens a year (as of FY 2018) estimated to enter between the ports of entry and then assert a credible fear in expedited-
59 removal proceedings.11 If such aliens contravened a proclamatio n suspending their entry unless they entered at a port of entry, they would become ineligib le for asylum, but would remain eligib le for statutory withho ld ing or CAT protection. And for the reasons discussed above, their claims would be processed more expeditiously. Conversely, if such aliens decided to instead arrive at ports of entry, they would remain eligib le for asylum and would proceed through the existing credible-fear screening process. Such an applicatio n of this rule could also affect the decision calculus for the estimated 24,000 or so aliens a year (as of FY 2018) who arrive at ports of entry along the southern border and assert a credible fear in expedited-remova l proceedings.12 Such aliens would likely face increased wait times at a U.S. port of entry, meaning that they would spend more time in Mexico. Third-country nationals in this category would have added incentives to take advantage of Mexican asylum procedures and to make decisions about travel to a U.S. port of entry based on informa tio n about which ports were most capable of swift processing. Such an applicatio n of this rule could also affect aliens who apply for asylum affirma tive ly or in removal proceedings after entering through the southern border. Some 11 The Departments estimated this number by using the approximate ly 171,511 aliens in FY 2018 who were referred to expedited removal after crossing illega lly between ports of entry and being apprehended by CBP. That number excludes the approximate ly 3,102 additiona l aliens who were arrested by ICE, because it is not clear at this time whether such aliens were ultimate ly processed at a port of entry. The Departments also relied on the fact that approximate ly 41% of aliens in expedited removal in FY 2018 triggered credible-fear screening. 12 The Departments estimated this number by using the approximate ly 59,921 aliens in FY 2018 who were referred to expedited removal after presenting at a port of entry. That number excludes the approximate ly 3,102 additiona l aliens who were arrested by ICE, because it is not clear at this time whether such aliens were ultima te ly processed at a port of entry. The Departments also relied on the fact that approximate ly 41% of aliens in expedited removal in FY 2018 triggered credible-fear screening.
60 of those asylum grants would become denials for aliens who became ineligib le for asylum because they crossed ille ga lly in contraventio n of a proclamatio n effective before they entered. Such aliens could, however, still obtain statutory withho ld ing of removal or CAT protection in section 240 proceedings. Finally, such a proclamatio n could also affect the thousands of aliens who are granted asylum each year. Those aliens' cases are equally subject to existing backlogs in immigra tio n courts, and could be adjudicated more swiftly if the number of non-meritorio us cases declined. Aliens with meritorio us claims could thus more expeditio usly receive the benefits associated with asylum. b. Effects on the Departments' Operations. Applying this rule in conjunctio n with a proclamatio n that channeled aliens seeking asylum to ports of entry would likely create significa nt overall effic ie nc ies in the Departments' operations beyond the general effic ie nc ies discussed above. Channeling even some proportion of aliens who currently enter illega lly and assert a credible fear to ports of entry would, on balance, be expected to help the Departments more effective ly leverage their resources to promote orderly and effic ie nt processing of inadmissib le aliens. At present, CBP dedicates enormous resources to attempting to apprehend aliens who cross the southern border illega lly. As noted, CBP apprehended 396,579 such aliens in FY 2018. Such crossings often occur in remote locations, and over 16,000 CBP officers are responsible for patrolling hundreds of thousands of square miles of territory, ranging from deserts to mountaino us terrain to cities. When a United States Border Patrol (''Border Patrol'' or ''USBP'') agent apprehends an alien who enters unlawfully, the USBP agent takes the alien into custody and transports the alien to a Border Patrol station
61 for processing'--whic h could be hours away. Family units apprehended after crossing illega lly present additiona l logistica l challe nges, and may require additiona l agents to assist with the transport of the illega l aliens from the point of apprehension to the station for processing. And apprehending one alien or group of aliens may come at the expense of apprehending others while agents are dedicating resources to transportatio n instead of patrolling. At the Border Patrol station, a CBP agent obtains an alien's fingerp rints, photographs, and biometric data, and begins asking background questions about the alien's nationality and purpose in crossing. At the same time, agents must make swift decisions, in coordinatio n with DOJ, as to whether to charge the alien with an immigra tio n-re la ted crimina l offense. Further, agents must decide whether to apply expedited-remova l procedures, to pursue reinstate me nt proceedings if the alien already has a removal order in effect, to authorize voluntary return, or to pursue some other lawful course of action. Once the processing of the alien is completed, the USBP temporarily detains any alien who is referred for removal proceedings. Once the USBP determines that an alien should be placed in expedited-remo va l proceedings, the alien is expeditio usly transferred to ICE custody in complia nce with federal law. The distance between ICE detention facilities and USBP stations, however, varies. Asylum officers and immigra tio n judges review negative credible-fear findings during expedited-remova l proceedings while the alien is in ICE custody. By contrast, CBP officers are able to employ a more orderly and streamlined process for inadmissib le aliens who present at one of the ports of entry along the southern border'--even if they claim a credible fear. Because such aliens have typically sought
62 admissio n without violating the law, CBP generally does not need to dedicate resources to apprehending or considering whether to charge such aliens. And while aliens who present at a port of entry undergo threshold screening to determine their admissib ility, see INA 235(b)(2), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(2), that process takes approximate ly the same amount of time as CBP's process for obtaining details from aliens apprehended between ports of entry. Just as for illega l entrants, CBP officers at ports of entry must decide whether inadmissib le aliens at ports of entry are subject to expedited removal. Aliens subject to such proceedings are then generally transferred to ICE custody so that DHS can imple me nt Congress's statutory mandate to detain such aliens during the pendency of expedited-remova l proceedings. As with stations, ports of entry vary in their proximity to ICE detention facilities. The Departments acknowledge that in the event all of the approximate ly 70,000 aliens per year who cross illega lly and assert a credible fear instead decide to present at a port of entry, processing times at ports of entry would be slower in the absence of additiona l resources or policies that would encourage aliens to enter at less busy ports. Using FY 2018 figures, the number of aliens presenting at a port of entry would rise from about 124,511 to about 200,000 aliens if all illega l aliens who assert a credible fear went to ports of entry. That would likely create longer lines at U.S. ports of entry, although the Departments note that such ports have variable capacities and that wait times vary considerably between them. The Departments nonetheless believe such a policy would be preferable to the status quo. Nearly 40% of inadmissib le aliens who present at ports of entry today are Mexican nationa ls, who rarely claim a credible fear and who accordingly can be processed and admitted or removed quickly.
63 Furthermore, the overwhelming number of aliens who would have an incentive under the rule and a proclamatio n to arrive at a port of entry rather than to cross ille ga lly are from third countries, not from Mexico. In FY 2018, CBP apprehended and referred to expedited removal an estimated 87,544 Northern Triangle nationa ls and an estimated 66,826 Mexican nationa ls, but Northern Triangle nationa ls assert a credible fear over 60% of the time, whereas Mexican nationa ls assert a credible fear less than 10% of the time. The Departments believe that it is reasonable for third-country aliens, who appear highly unlike ly to be persecuted on account of a protected ground or tortured in Mexico, to be subject to orderly processing at ports of entry that takes into account resource constraints at ports of entry and in U.S. detention facilities. Such orderly processing would be impossib le if large proportions of third-country nationals continue to cross the southern border illega lly. To be sure, some Mexican nationa ls who would assert a credible fear may also have to spend more time waiting for processing in Mexico. Such nationals, however, could still obtain statutory withho ld ing of removal or CAT protection if they crossed illega lly, which would allow them a safeguard against persecution. Moreover, only 178 Mexican nationa ls received asylum in FY 2018 after initia lly asserting a credible fear of persecution in expedited-remo va l proceedings, indicating that the category of Mexican nationa ls most likely to be affected by the rule and a proclamatio n would also be highly unlike ly to establish eligib ility for asylum. Re gulatory Re quire me nts A. Administrativ e Procedure Act
64 While the Administrative Procedure Act (''APA'') generally requires agencies to publish notice of a proposed rulemak ing in the Federal Register for a period of public comment, it provides an exception ''when the agency for good cause finds . . . that notice and public procedure thereon are impracticab le, unnecessary, or contrary to the public interest.'' 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B). This exception relieves agencies of the notice-and-comment requirement in emergenc y situatio ns, or in circumsta nces where ''the delay created by the notice and comment requirements would result in serious damage to important interests. '' Woods Psychiatric Inst. v . United States, 20 Cl. Ct. 324, 333 (1990), aff'd, 925 F.2d 1454 (Fed. Cir. 1991); see also Nat'l Fed'n of Federal Emps. v . Nat'l Treasury Emps. Union, 671 F.2d 607, 611 (D.C. Cir. 1982); United States v . Dean, 604 F.3d 1275, 1279 (11th Cir. 2010). Agencies have previously relied on this exception in promulgating a host of immigra tio n-re la ted interim rules.13 Furthermore, DHS has invoked this exception in promulgating rules related to expedited removal'--a context in which Congress recognized the need for dispatch in addressing large volumes of aliens by giving the Secretary significa nt discretio n to ''modify at any time'' the classes of aliens 13 See, e.g., Visas: Documenta tio n of Nonimmigra nts Under the Immigratio n and Nationality Act, as Amended, 81 FR 5906, 5907 (Feb. 4, 2016) (interim rule citing good cause to immed iate ly require additiona l documentatio n from certain Caribbean agricultura l workers to avoid ''an increase in applicatio ns for admissio n in bad faith by persons who would otherwise have been denied visas and are seeking to avoid the visa requireme nt and consular screening process during the period between the publicatio n of a proposed and a final rule''); Suspending the 30-Day and Annual Interview Requireme nts From the Special Registratio n Process for Certain Nonimmigra nts, 68 FR 67578, 67581 (Dec. 2, 2003) (interim rule claiming good cause exception for suspending certain automatic registratio n requirements for nonimmigra nts because ''witho ut [the] regulatio n approximate ly 82,532 aliens would be subject to 30-day or annual re-registratio n interviews'' over six months).
65 who would be subject to such procedures. See INA 235(b)(1)(A)(iii)(I), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1)(A)(iii)(I).14 The Departments have concluded that the good-cause exceptions in 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) and (d)(3) apply to this rule. Notice and comment on this rule, along with a 30-day delay in its effective date, would be impracticab le and contrary to the public interest. The Departments have determined that immed iate imple me nta tio n of this rule is essential to avoid creating an incentive for aliens to seek to cross the border during pre-promulga tio n notice and comment under 5 U.S.C. 553(b) or during the 30-day delay in the effective date under 5 U.S.C. 553(d). DHS concluded in January 2017 that it was imperative to give immed ia te effect to a rule designating Cuban nationals arriving by air as eligib le for expedited removal because ''pre-promulgatio n notice and comment would . . . . endanger human life and hav[e] a potential destabilizing effect in the region.'' Eliminating Exception to Expedited Removal Authority for Cuban Nationals Arriving by Air, 82 FR at 4770. DHS in particular cited the prospect that ''publica tio n of the rule as a proposed rule, which would signal a significa nt change in policy while permitting continua tio n of the exception for 14 See, e.g., Eliminating Exception to Expedited Removal Authority for Cuban Nationals Arriving by Air, 82 FR at 4770 (claiming good cause exception because the ability to detain certain Cuban nationa ls ''while admissib ility and identity are determined and protection claims are adjudicated, as well as to quickly remove those without protection claims or claims to lawful status, is a necessity for national security and public safety''); Designating Aliens For Expedited Removal, 69 FR at 48880 (claiming good cause exception for expansion of expedited-remo va l program due to ''[t]he large volume of illega l entries, and attempted illega l entries, and the attendant risks to national security presented by these ille ga l entries,'' as well as ''the need to deter foreign nationals from undertaking dangerous border crossings, and thereby prevent the needless deaths and crimes associated with human traffick ing and alien smuggling operations'').
66 Cuban nationals, could lead to a surge in migratio n of Cuban nationals seeking to travel to and enter the United States during the period between the publicatio n of a proposed and a fina l rule.'' Id. DHS found that ''[s]uch a surge would threaten national security and public safety by diverting valuable Governme nt resources from counterterrorism and homeland security responsibilities. A surge could also have a destabilizing effect on the region, thus weakening the security of the United States and threatening its internatio na l relations. '' Id. DHS concluded: ''[A] surge could result in signific a nt loss of human life.'' Id.; accord, e.g., Designating Aliens For Expedited Removal, 69 FR 48877 (noting similar destabilizing incentives for a surge during a delay in the effective date); Visas: Documentatio n of Nonimmigra nts Under the Immigra tio n and Nationality Act, as Amended, 81 FR at 5907 (find ing the good-cause exception applicable because of similar short-run incentive concerns). These same concerns would apply here as well. Pre-promulga tio n notice and comment, or a delay in the effective date, could lead to an increase in migratio n to the southern border to enter the United States before the rule took effect. For instance, the thousands of aliens who presently enter illega lly and make claims of credible fear if and when they are apprehended would have an added incentive to cross ille ga lly during the comment period. They have an incentive to cross illega lly in the hopes of evading detection entirely. Even once apprehended, at present, they are able to take advantage of a second opportunity to remain in the United States by making credible-fear claims in expedited-remova l proceedings. Even if their statements are ultima te ly not found to be genuine, they are likely to be released into the interior pending section 240 proceedings that may not occur for months or years. Based on the availab le statistics, the
67 Departments believe that a large proportion of aliens who enter illega lly and assert a fear could be released while awaiting section 240 proceedings. There continues to be an ''urgent need to deter foreign nationals from undertaking dangerous border crossings, and thereby prevent the needless deaths and crimes associated with human traffick ing and alien smuggling operations.'' Designating Aliens For Expedited Removal, 69 FR at 48878. Furthermore, there are already large numbers of migrants'--inc lud ing thousands of aliens traveling in groups, primarily from Central America'--e xpected to attempt entry at the southern border in the coming weeks. Some are traveling in large, organized groups through Mexico and, by reports, intend to come to the United States unlawfully or without proper documentatio n and to express an intent to seek asylum. Creating an incentive for members of those groups to attempt to enter the United States unlawfully before this rule took effect would make more dangerous their already perilous journeys, and would further strain CBP's apprehension operations. This interim rule is thus a practical means to address these developme nts and avoid creating an even larger short-term influx; an extended notice-and-comme nt rulemak ing process would be impractic ab le. Alternative ly, the Departments may forgo notice-and-comme nt procedures and a delay in the effective date because this rule involves a ''foreign affairs functio n of the United States.'' 5 U.S.C. 553(a)(1). The flow of aliens across the southern border, unlawfully or without appropriate travel documents, directly implica tes the foreign policy interests of the United States. See, e.g., Exec. Order 13767 (Jan. 25, 2017). Presidentia l proclamatio ns invoking section 212(f) or 215(a)(1) of the INA at the southern border
68 necessarily implica te our relations with Mexico and the President's foreign policy, includ ing sensitive and ongoing negotiatio ns with Mexico about how to manage our shared border.15 A proclamatio n under section 212(f) of the INA would reflect a presidentia l determinatio n that some or all entries along the border ''would [be] detrimenta l to the interests of the United States.'' And the structure of the rule, under which the Attorney General and the Secretary are exercising their statutory authority to establish a mandatory bar to asylum eligib ility resting squarely on a proclamatio n issued by the President, confirms the direct relationship between the President's foreign policy decisions in this area and the rule. For instance, a proclamatio n aimed at channeling aliens who wish to make a claim for asylum to ports of entry at the southern border would be inextricab ly related to any negotiatio ns over a safe-third-country agreement (as defined in INA 208(a)(2)(A), 8 U.S.C. 1158(a)(2)(A)), or any similar arrangeme nts. As noted, the vast majority of aliens who enter illega lly today come from the Northern Triangle countries, and large portions of those aliens assert a credible fear. Channeling those aliens to ports of entry would encourage these aliens to first avail themselves of offers of asylum from Mexico. Moreover, this rule would be an integra l part of ongoing negotiatio ns with Mexico and Northern Triangle countries over how to address the influx of tens of thousands of migra nts from Central America through Mexico and into the United States. 15 For instance, since 2004, the United States and Mexico have been operating under a memorandum of understand ing concerning the repatriation of Mexican nationals. Memorandum of Understanding Between the Department of Homeland Security of the United States of America and the Secretariat of Governance and the Secretariat of Foreign Affairs of the United Mexican States, on the Safe, Orderly, Dignified and Humane Repatriatio n of Mexican Nationals (Feb. 20, 2004). Article 6 of that memorandum reserves the movement of third-country nationa ls through Mexico and the United States for further bilateral negotiatio ns.
69 For instance, over the past few weeks, the United States has consistently engaged with the Security and Foreign Ministries of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras, as well as the Ministries of Governance and Foreign Affairs of Mexico, to discuss how to address the mass influx of aliens traveling together from Central America who plan to seek to enter at the southern border. Those ongoing discussions involve negotiatio ns over issues such as how these other countries will develop a process to provide this influx with the opportunity to seek protection at the safest and earliest point of transit possible, and how to establish complia nce and enforceme nt mechanisms for those who seek to enter the United States illega lly, includ ing for those who do not avail themselves of earlier offers of protection. Furthermore, the United States and Mexico have been engaged in ongoing discussio ns of a safe-third-country agreement, and this rule will strengthen the ability of the United States to address the crisis at the southern border and therefore facilitate the likelihood of success in future negotiatio ns. This rule thus supports the President's foreign policy with respect to Mexico and the Northern Triangle countries in this area and is exempt from the notice-and-comme nt and delayed-effec tive-date requireme nts in 5 U.S.C. 553. See Am. Ass'n of Ex porters & Importers-Tex tile & Apparel Grp. v . United States, 751 F.2d 1239, 1249 (Fed. Cir. 1985) (noting that foreign affairs exception covers agency actions ''linked intima te ly with the Governme nt's overall politica l agenda concerning relations with another country''); Yassini v . Crosland, 618 F.2d 1356, 1361 (9th Cir. 1980) (because an immigratio n directive ''was imple me nting the President's foreign policy,'' the action ''fell within the foreign affairs functio n and good cause exceptions to the notice and comment requireme nts of the APA'').
70 Invoking the APA's foreign affairs exception is also consistent with past rulemak ings. In 2016, for example, in response to diplomatic developments between the United States and Cuba, DHS changed its regulatio ns concerning flights to and from the island via an immed iate ly effective interim final rule. This rulemak ing explained that it was covered by the foreign affairs exception because it was ''consiste nt with U.S. foreign policy goals'''--spec ifica lly, the ''continued effort to normalize relations between the two countries. '' Flights to and From Cuba, 81 FR 14948, 14952 (Mar. 21, 2016). In a similar vein, DHS and the State Department recently provided notice that they were elimina ting an exception to expedited removal for certain Cuban nationa ls. The notice explained that the change in policy was subject to the foreign affairs exception because it was ''part of a major foreign policy initia tive announced by the President, and is central to ongoing diplomatic discussio ns between the United States and Cuba with respect to travel and migratio n between the two countries. '' Eliminating Exception To Expedited Removal Authority for Cuban Nationals Encountered in the United States or Arriving by Sea, 82 FR at 4904''05. For the foregoing reasons, taken together, the Departments have concluded that the foreign affairs exemption to notice-and-comme nt rulemak ing applies. B. Regulatory Flex ibility Act The Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq., as amended by the Small Business Regulatory Enforceme nt Fairness Act of 1996, requires an agency to prepare and make available to the public a regulatory flexib ility analysis that describes the effect of the rule on small entitie s (i.e., small businesses, small organizatio ns, and small
71 governme nta l jurisdictio ns). A regulatory flexib ility analysis is not required when a rule is exempt from notice-and-comme nt rulemak ing. C. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 This interim final rule will not result in the expenditure by state, local, and tribal governme nts, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100 millio n or more in any one year, and it will not significa ntly or unique ly affect small governme nts. Therefore, no actions were deemed necessary under the provisio ns of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995. D. Congressional Rev iew Act This interim final rule is not a major rule as defined by section 804 of the Congressiona l Review Act. 5 U.S.C. 804. This rule will not result in an annual effect on the economy of $100 millio n or more; a major increase in costs or prices; or significa nt adverse effects on competitio n, employme nt, investme nt, productivity, innovatio n, or on the ability of United States-based enterprises to compete with foreign-based enterprises in domestic and export markets. E. Ex ecutiv e Order 12866, Ex ecutiv e Order 13563, and Ex ecutiv e Order 13771 (Regulatory Planning and Rev iew) This interim final rule is not a ''significa nt regulatory action'' under section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866 because the rule is exempt under the foreign-a ffa irs exemption in section 3(d)(2) as part of the actual exercise of diplomacy. The rule is consequently also exempt from Executive Order 13771 because it is not a signific a nt regulatory action under Executive Order 12866. Though the potential costs, benefits, and transfers associated with some proclamatio ns may have any of a range of economic impacts, this
72 rule itself does not have an impact aside from enabling future action. The Departments have discussed what some of the potential impacts associated with a proclamatio n may be, but these impacts do not stem directly from this rule and, as such, they do not consider them to be costs, benefits, or transfers of this rule. This rule amends existing regulatio ns to provide that aliens subject to restrictions on entry under certain proclamatio ns are ineligib le for asylum. The expected effects of this rule for aliens and on the Departments' operations are discussed above. As noted, this rule will result in the applicatio n of an additiona l mandatory bar to asylum, but the scope of that bar will depend on the substance of relevant triggering proclamatio ns. In addition, this rule requires DHS to consider and apply the proclamatio n bar in the credible-fear screening analysis, which DHS does not currently do. Applicatio n of the new bar to asylum will likely decrease the number of asylum grants. By applying the bar earlier in the process, it will lessen the time that aliens who are ineligib le for asylum and who lack a reasonable fear of persecution or torture will be present in the United States. Finally, DOJ is amending its regulatio ns with respect to aliens who are subject to the proclamatio n bar to asylum eligib ility to ensure that aliens who establish a reasonable fear of persecution or torture may still seek, in proceedings before immigratio n judges, statutory withho ld ing of removal under the INA or CAT protection. Ex ecutiv e Order 13132 (Federalism) This rule will not have substantia l direct effects on the States, on the relationship between the national governme nt and the States, or on the distributio n of power and responsibilities among the various levels of governme nt. Therefore, in accordance with section 6 of Executive Order 13132, it is determined that this rule does not have suffic ie nt
73 federalism implic atio ns to warrant the preparation of a federalism summary impact statement. F. Ex ecutiv e Order 12988 (Civ il Justice Reform) This rule meets the applicable standards set forth in sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2) of Executive Order 12988. G. Paperwork Reduction Act This rule does not propose new or revisions to existing ''collectio n[s] of informatio n'' as that term is defined under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Public Law 10413, 44 U.S.C. chapter 35, and its imple me nting regulatio ns, 5 CFR part 1320. List of Subje cts 8 CFR Part 208 Administrative practice and procedure, Aliens, Immigratio n, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. 8 CFR Part 1003 Administrative practice and procedure, Aliens, Immigratio n, Legal services, Organizatio n and functio ns (Governme nt agencies). 8 CFR Part 1208 Administrative practice and procedure, Aliens, Immigratio n, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. Re gulatory Ame ndme nts DEPARTM ENT OF HOM ELAND SECURITY Accordingly, for the reasons set forth in the preamble, the Secretary of Homeland Security amends 8 CFR part 208 as follows:
74 PART 208'--PROCEDURES FOR ASYLUM AND WITHHOLDING OF REM OVAL 1. The authority citation for part 208 continue s to read as fol1ows: Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1101, 1103, 1158, 1226, 1252, 1282; Title VII of Public Law 110229, 8 CFR part 2. 2. In § 208.13, add paragraph (c)(3) to read as follows: § 208.13 Establishing asylum e ligibility. * * * * * (c) * * * (3) Additional limitation on eligibility for asylum. For applicatio ns filed after [INSERT DATE OF PUBLICATION IN THE FEDERAL REGISTER], an alien shall be ineligib le for asylum if the alien is subject to a presidentia l proclamatio n or other presidentia l order suspending or limiting the entry of aliens along the southern border with Mexico that is issued pursuant to subsection 212(f) or 215(a)(1) of the Act on or after [INSERT DATE OF PUBLICATION IN THE FEDERAL REGISTER] and the alien enters the United States after the effective date of the proclamatio n or order contrary to the terms of the proclamatio n or order. This limita tio n on eligib ility does not apply if the proclamatio n or order expressly provides that it does not affect eligib ility for asylum, or expressly provides for a waiver or exception that makes the suspension or limitatio n inapplicab le to the alien. 3. In § 208.30, revise the section heading and add a sentence at the end of paragraph (e)(5) to read as follows: § 208.30 Cre dible fe ar de te rminations involving stowaways and applicants for admission who are found inadmissible pursuant to se ction 212(a)(6)(C) or 212(a)(7)
75 of the Act or whose e ntry is limite d or suspe nde d unde r se ction 212(f) or 215(a)(1) of the Act. * * * * * (e) * * * (5) * * * If the alien is found to be an alien described in 8 CFR 208.13(c)(3), then the asylum officer shall enter a negative credible fear determinatio n with respect to the alien's applicatio n for asylum. The Department shall nonetheless place the alien in proceedings under section 240 of the Act for full consideratio n of the alien's claim for withho ld ing of removal under section 241(b)(3) of the Act, or for withho ld ing or deferral of removal under the Convention Against Torture if the alien establishes a reasonable fear of persecution or torture. However, if an alien fails to establish, during the intervie w with the asylum officer, a reasonable fear of either persecution or torture, the asylum officer will provide the alien with a written notice of decision, which will be subject to immigra tio n judge review consistent with paragraph (g) of this section, except that the immigra tio n judge will review the reasonable fear findings under the reasonable fear standard instead of the credible fear standard described in paragraph (g) and in 8 CFR 1208.30(g). * * * * * Approved: __________________________ Kirstjen M. Nielsen Secretary of Homeland Security
76 Dated: November 5, 2018. DEPARTM ENT OF JUSTICE Accordingly, for the reasons set forth in the preamble, the Attorney General amends 8 CFR parts 1003 and 1208 as follows: PART 1003'--EXECUTIVE OFFICE FOR IM M IGRATION REVIEW 4. The authority citation for part 1003 continue s to read as follows: Authority: 5 U.S.C. 301; 6 U.S.C 521; 8 U.S.C. 1101, 1103, 1154, 1155, 1158, 1182, 1226, 1229, 1229a, 1229b, 1229c, 1231, 1254a, 1255, 1324d, 1330, 1361, 1362; 28 U.S.C. 509, 510, 1746; sec. 2 Reorg. Plan No. 2 of 1950; 3 CFR, 1949''1953 Comp., p. 1002; section 203 of Pub. L. 105''100, 111 Stat. 2196''200; sections 1506 and 1510 of Pub. L. 106''386, 114 Stat. 1527''29, 1531''32; section 1505 of Pub. L. 106''554, 114 Stat. 2763A''326 to ''328. 5. In § 1003.42, add a sentence at the end of paragraph (d) to read as follows: § 1003.42 Re vie w of cre dible fe ar de te rmination. * * * * * (d) * * * If the alien is determined to be an alien described in 8 CFR 208.13(c)(3) or 1208.13(c)(3) and is determined to lack a reasonable fear under 8 CFR 208.30(e)(5), the immigra tio n judge shall first review de novo the determinatio n that the alien is described in 8 CFR 208.13(c)(3) or 1208.13(c)(3) prior to any further review of the asylum officer's negative determina tion. * * * * * PART 1208'--PROCEDURES FOR ASYLUM AND WITHHOLDING OF REM OVAL 6. The authority citation for part 1208 continue s to read as fol1ows: Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1101, 1103, 1158, 1226, 1252, 1282; Title VII of Public Law 110229.
77 7. In § 1208.13, add paragraph (c)(3) to read as follows: § 1208.13 Establishing asylum e ligibility. * * * * * (c) * * * (3) Additional limitation on eligibility for asylum. For applicatio ns filed after [INSERT DATE OF PUBLICATION IN THE FEDERAL REGISTER], an alien shall be ineligib le for asylum if the alien is subject to a presidentia l proclamatio n or other presidentia l order suspending or limiting the entry of aliens along the southern border with Mexico that is issued pursuant to subsection 212(f) or 215(a)(1) of the Act on or after [INSERT DATE OF PUBLICATION IN THE FEDERAL REGISTER] and the alien enters the United States after the effective date of the proclamatio n or order contrary to the terms of the proclamatio n or order. This limita tio n on eligib ility does not apply if the proclamatio n or order expressly provides that it does not affect eligib ility for asylum, or expressly provides for a waiver or exception that makes the suspension or limitatio n inapplicab le to the alien. 8. In § 1208.30, revise the section heading and add paragraph (g)(1) to read as follows: § 1208.30 Cre dible fe ar de te rminations involving stowaways and applicants for admission who are found inadmissible pursuant to se ction 212(a)(6)(C) or 212(a)(7) of the Act or whose e ntry is limite d or suspe nde d unde r se ction 212(f) or 215(a)(1) of the Act. * * * * * (g) * * *
78 (1) Rev iew by immigration judge of a mandatory bar finding. If the alien is determined to be an alien described in 8 CFR 208.13(c)(3) or 1208.13(c)(3) and is determined to lack a reasonable fear under 8 CFR 208.30(e)(5), the immigratio n judge shall first review de novo the determina tio n that the alien is described in 8 CFR 208.13(c)(3) or 1208.13(c)(3). If the immigratio n judge finds that the alien is not described in 8 CFR 208.13(c)(3) or 1208.13(c)(3), then the immigratio n judge shall vacate the order of the asylum officer, and DHS may commence removal proceedings under section 240 of the Act. If the immigra tio n judge concurs with the credible fear determinatio n that the alien is an alien described in 8 CFR 208.13(c)(3) or 1208.13(c)(3), the immigratio n judge will then review the asylum officer's negative decision regarding reasonable fear made under 8 CFR 208.30(e)(5) consistent with paragraph (g)(2) of this section, except that the immigratio n judge will review the find ings under the reasonable fear standard instead of the credible fear standard described in paragraph (g)(2). * * * * * Approved: __________________________ Jefferson B. Sessions III Attorney General Dated: November 6, 2018. [FR Doc. 2018-24594 Filed: 11/8/2018 4:15 pm; Publication Date: 11/9/2018]
Presidential Proclamation Addressing Mass Migration Through the Southern Border of the United States | The White House
The United States expects the arrival at the border between the United States and Mexico (southern border) of a substantial number of aliens primarily from Central America who appear to have no lawful basis for admission into our country. They are traveling in large, organized groups through Mexico and reportedly intend to enter the United States unlawfully or without proper documentation and to seek asylum, despite the fact that, based on past experience, a significant majority will not be eligible for or be granted that benefit. Many entered Mexico unlawfully '-- some with violence '-- and have rejected opportunities to apply for asylum and benefits in Mexico. The arrival of large numbers of aliens will contribute to the overloading of our immigration and asylum system and to the release of thousands of aliens into the interior of the United States. The continuing and threatened mass migration of aliens with no basis for admission into the United States through our southern border has precipitated a crisis and undermines the integrity of our borders. I therefore must take immediate action to protect the national interest, and to maintain the effectiveness of the asylum system for legitimate asylum seekers who demonstrate that they have fled persecution and warrant the many special benefits associated with asylum.
In recent weeks, an average of approximately 2,000 inadmissible aliens have entered each day at our southern border. In Fiscal Year 2018 overall, 124,511 aliens were found inadmissible at ports of entry on the southern border, while 396,579 aliens were apprehended entering the United States unlawfully between such ports of entry. The great number of aliens who cross unlawfully into the United States through the southern border consumes tremendous resources as the Government seeks to surveil, apprehend, screen, process, and detain them.
Aliens who enter the United States unlawfully or without proper documentation and are subject to expedited removal may avoid being promptly removed by demonstrating, during an initial screening process, a credible fear of persecution or torture. Approximately 2 decades ago, most aliens deemed inadmissible at a port of entry or apprehended after unlawfully entering the United States through the southern border were single adults who were promptly returned to Mexico, and very few asserted a fear of return. Since then, however, there has been a massive increase in fear-of-persecution or torture claims by aliens who enter the United States through the southern border. The vast majority of such aliens are found to satisfy the credible-fear threshold, although only a fraction of the claimants whose claims are adjudicated ultimately qualify for asylum or other protection. Aliens found to have a credible fear are often released into the interior of the United States, as a result of a lack of detention space and a variety of other legal and practical difficulties, pending adjudication of their claims in a full removal proceeding in immigration court. The immigration adjudication process often takes years to complete because of the growing volume of claims and because of the need to expedite proceedings for detained aliens. During that time, many released aliens fail to appear for hearings, do not comply with subsequent orders of removal, or are difficult to locate and remove.
Members of family units pose particular challenges. The Federal Government lacks sufficient facilities to house families together. Virtually all members of family units who enter the United States through the southern border, unlawfully or without proper documentation, and that are found to have a credible fear of persecution, are thus released into the United States. Against this backdrop of near-assurance of release, the number of such aliens traveling as family units who enter through the southern border and claim a credible fear of persecution has greatly increased. And large numbers of family units decide to make the dangerous and unlawful border crossing with their children.
The United States has a long and proud history of offering protection to aliens who are fleeing persecution and torture and who qualify under the standards articulated in our immigration laws, including through our asylum system and the Refugee Admissions Program. But our system is being overwhelmed by migration through our southern border. Crossing the border to avoid detection and then, if apprehended, claiming a fear of persecution is in too many instances an avenue to near-automatic release into the interior of the United States. Once released, such aliens are very difficult to remove. An additional influx of large groups of aliens arriving at once through the southern border would add tremendous strain to an already taxed system, especially if they avoid orderly processing by unlawfully crossing the southern border.
The entry of large numbers of aliens into the United States unlawfully between ports of entry on the southern border is contrary to the national interest, and our law has long recognized that aliens who seek to lawfully enter the United States must do so at ports of entry. Unlawful entry puts lives of both law enforcement and aliens at risk. By contrast, entry at ports of entry at the southern border allows for orderly processing, which enables the efficient deployment of law enforcement resources across our vast southern border.
Failing to take immediate action to stem the mass migration the United States is currently experiencing and anticipating would only encourage additional mass unlawful migration and further overwhelming of the system.
Other presidents have taken strong action to prevent mass migration. In Proclamation 4865 of September 29, 1981 (High Seas Interdiction of Illegal Aliens), in response to an influx of Haitian nationals traveling to the United States by sea, President Reagan suspended the entry of undocumented aliens from the high seas and ordered the Coast Guard to intercept such aliens before they reached United States shores and to return them to their point of origin. In Executive Order 12807 of May 24, 1992 (Interdiction of Illegal Aliens), in response to a dramatic increase in the unlawful mass migration of Haitian nationals to the United States, President Bush ordered additional measures to interdict such Haitian nationals and return them to their home country. The Supreme Court upheld the legality of those measures in Sale v. Haitian Centers Council, Inc., 509 U.S. 155 (1993).
I am similarly acting to suspend, for a limited period, the entry of certain aliens in order to address the problem of large numbers of aliens traveling through Mexico to enter our country unlawfully or without proper documentation. I am tailoring the suspension to channel these aliens to ports of entry, so that, if they enter the United States, they do so in an orderly and controlled manner instead of unlawfully. Under this suspension, aliens entering through the southern border, even those without proper documentation, may, consistent with this proclamation, avail themselves of our asylum system, provided that they properly present themselves for inspection at a port of entry. In anticipation of a large group of aliens arriving in the coming weeks, I am directing the Secretary of Homeland Security to commit additional resources to support our ports of entry at the southern border to assist in processing those aliens '-- and all others arriving at our ports of entry '-- as efficiently as possible.
But aliens who enter the United States unlawfully through the southern border in contravention of this proclamation will be ineligible to be granted asylum under the regulation promulgated by the Attorney General and the Secretary of Homeland Security that became effective earlier today. Those aliens may, however, still seek other forms of protection from persecution or torture. In addition, this limited suspension will facilitate ongoing negotiations with Mexico and other countries regarding appropriate cooperative arrangements to prevent unlawful mass migration to the United States through the southern border. Thus, this proclamation is also necessary to manage and conduct the foreign affairs of the United States effectively.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, DONALD J. TRUMP, by the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including sections 212(f) and 215(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) (8 U.S.C. 1182(f) and 1185(a), respectively) hereby find that, absent the measures set forth in this proclamation, the entry into the United States of persons described in section 1 of this proclamation would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, and that their entry should be subject to certain restrictions, limitations, and exceptions. I therefore hereby proclaim the following:
Section 1. Suspension and Limitation on Entry. The entry of any alien into the United States across the international boundary between the United States and Mexico is hereby suspended and limited, subject to section 2 of this proclamation. That suspension and limitation shall expire 90 days after the date of this proclamation or the date on which an agreement permits the United States to remove aliens to Mexico in compliance with the terms of section 208(a)(2)(A) of the INA (8 U.S.C. 1158(a)(2)(A)), whichever is earlier.
Sec. 2. Scope and Implementation of Suspension and Limitation on Entry. (a) The suspension and limitation on entry pursuant to section 1 of this proclamation shall apply only to aliens who enter the United States after the date of this proclamation.
(b) The suspension and limitation on entry pursuant to section 1 of this proclamation shall not apply to any alien who enters the United States at a port of entry and properly presents for inspection, or to any lawful permanent resident of the United States.
(c) Nothing in this proclamation shall limit an alien entering the United States from being considered for withholding of removal under section 241(b)(3) of the INA (8 U.S.C. 1231(b)(3)) or protection pursuant to the regulations promulgated under the authority of the implementing legislation regarding the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, or limit the statutory processes afforded to unaccompanied alien children upon entering the United States under section 279 of title 6, United States Code, and section 1232 of title 8, United States Code.
(d) No later than 90 days after the date of this proclamation, the Secretary of State, the Attorney General, and the Secretary of Homeland Security shall jointly submit to the President, through the Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs, a recommendation on whether an extension or renewal of the suspension or limitation on entry in section 1 of this proclamation is in the interests of the United States.
Sec. 3. Interdiction. The Secretary of State and the Secretary of Homeland Security shall consult with the Government of Mexico regarding appropriate steps '-- consistent with applicable law and the foreign policy, national security, and public-safety interests of the United States '-- to address the approach of large groups of aliens traveling through Mexico with the intent of entering the United States unlawfully, including efforts to deter, dissuade, and return such aliens before they physically enter United States territory through the southern border.
Sec. 4. Severability. It is the policy of the United States to enforce this proclamation to the maximum extent possible to advance the interests of the United States. Accordingly:
(a) if any provision of this proclamation, or the application of any provision to any person or circumstance, is held to be invalid, the remainder of this proclamation and the application of its other provisions to any other persons or circumstances shall not be affected thereby; and
(b) if any provision of this proclamation, or the application of any provision to any person or circumstance, is held to be invalid because of the failure to follow certain procedures, the relevant executive branch officials shall implement those procedural requirements to conform with existing law and with any applicable court orders.
Sec. 5. General Provisions. (a) Nothing in this proclamation shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:
(i) the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or
(ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.
(b) This proclamation shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.
(c) This proclamation is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand thisninth day of November, in the year of our Lord two thousand eighteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-third.
DONALD J. TRUMP
#GoogleWalkout update: Collective action works, but we need to keep working.
#GoogleWalkout in San Francisco, California on November 1, 2018For Immediate Release:Last week, 20,000 Google employees and TVCs (Temps, Vendors and Contractors) walked out to protest discrimination, racism, sexual harassment and a workplace culture that only works for some. By taking collective action, and joining a global movement, these workers took a risk. The risk was calculated, and their demands were reasonable: these employees were asking for equity, dignity, and respect.
What they showed is that collective action works, and when we work together we can make change.
Today, Google made progress toward addressing these demands. The company followed Uber and Microsoft by eliminating forced arbitration in cases of sexual harassment. It also committed to more transparency in sexual harassment reporting, and will allow workers to bring representatives to meetings with HR. We commend this progress, and the rapid action which brought it about.
However, the response ignored several of the core demands''--'like elevating the diversity officer and employee representation on the board''--'and troublingly erased those focused on racism, discrimination, and the structural inequity built into the modern day Jim Crow class system that separates 'full time' employees from contract workers. Contract workers make up more than half of Google's workforce, and perform essential roles across the company, but receive few of the benefits associated with tech company employment. They are also largely people of color, immigrants, and people from working class backgrounds.
Organizer Stephanie Parker said of the response, ''We demand a truly equitable culture, and Google leadership can achieve this by putting employee representation on the board and giving full rights and protections to contract workers, our most vulnerable workers, many of whom are Black and Brown women.''
In addition the company must address issues of systemic racism and discrimination, including pay equity and rates of promotion, and not just sexual harassment alone. These forms of marginalization function together to police access to power and resources. ''And they all have the same root cause, which is a concentration of power and a lack of accountability at the top,'' Stephanie said.
Sexual harassment is the symptom, not the cause. If we want to end sexual harassment in the workplace, we must fix these structural imbalances of power.
As organizer Demma Rodriguez put it, ''The process by which we build a truly equitable culture must center the voices of black women, immigrants, and people of color''--'those who too often pay the most in the face of these intersecting problems. We are committed to making this happen, because true equity depends on it.''
This is a global movement, and the beginning of our continued work, not the end. While we're thrilled to see progress on sexual harassment, we will not let up on the demands most urgent for women of color: an employee representative on the board, elevating the chief diversity officer, greater transparency on and an end to opportunity inequity at Google and beyond.
We look forward to meeting with Google leadership in working to meet all of our demands.
Organizers of the massive walkouts at Google last week are '-- rightfully so '-- not letting up on their demands. Earlier this morning, Google CEO Sundar Pichai responded to some of their demands, outlining how Google is getting rid of forced arbitration for sexual harassment and sexual assault claims, offering more transparency around those investigations and more.
While Google did make some changes, the company did not address all of the organizers' demands. For example, Google failed to elevate its chief diversity officer to report directly to Pichai and also ignored the organizers' request to add an employee representative to the board of directors.
In the Medium post today, the organizers commended Google's process while also noting how Pichai's response did not address many of the core demands. In the post, they write:
However, the response ignored several of the core demands''--'like elevating the diversity officer and employee representation on the board''--'and troublingly erased those focused on racism, discrimination, and the structural inequity built into the modern day Jim Crow class system that separates 'full time' employees from contract workers. Contract workers make up more than half of Google's workforce, and perform essential roles across the company, but receive few of the benefits associated with tech company employment. They are also largely people of color, immigrants, and people from working class backgrounds.
''The process by which we build a truly equitable culture must center the voices of black women, immigrants, and people of color '-- those who too often pay the most in the face of these intersecting problems,'' Google employee and walkout organizer Demma Rodriguez said in the Medium post. ''We are committed to making this happen, because true equity depends on it.''
The worldwide walkout of 20,000 Google employees and contractors came in response to a damning New York Times report regarding Google's handling of sexual harassment investigations. Moving forward, the organizers say they will not let up on the demands ''most urgent for women of color: an employee representative on the board, elevating the chief diversity officer, greater transparency on and an end to opportunity inequity at Google and beyond'' and looks ''forward to meeting with Google leadership in working to meet all of our demands.''
I've reached out to Google and will update this story if I hear back.
Trump Supporter Accused of Mailing Bombs Is Indicted in New York - The New York Times
Image The police removing a pipe bomb from a Manhattan post office on Oct. 2. Cesar A. Sayoc Jr. has been indicted on charges that he mailed 16 of the bombs to prominent Democrats and other critics of President Trump. Credit Credit Jeenah Moon for The New York Times A Florida man accused of mailing 16 pipe bombs to critics of President Trump was indicted in Manhattan on Friday on charges that carry a potential sentence of life in prison.
A federal grand jury returned the 30-count indictment against the man, Cesar A. Sayoc Jr., 56, a fervent Trump supporter who was arrested on Oct. 26 in Plantation, Fla., and brought to New York this week to face charges.
The authorities have said that Mr. Sayoc sent homemade bombs fashioned from PVC pipe and glass shards to prominent Democrats '-- among them Hillary Clinton and former President Barack Obama '-- as well as to CNN and private critics of the president like the actor Robert DeNiro. His fingerprints were found on two of the envelopes in which the bombs were mailed, and DNA evidence links him to 10 of the devices, the government said.
Mr. Sayoc was charged in the indictment in connection with what the authorities have called a ''domestic terrorist attack'' that involved the mailing of the crude pipe bombs to more than a dozen targets around the United States.
Image Cesar A. Sayoc Jr. Credit Broward County Sheriff's Office Mr. Sayoc's federal defender, Sarah Baumgartel, declined to comment on Friday.
Though the bombs were mailed to targets across the country, the indictment charges Mr. Sayoc only in connection with five devices sent to victims in Manhattan and Westchester County, N.Y., which are both part of the Southern District of New York.
Those packages were sent to Mrs. Clinton; Mr. DeNiro; John O. Brennan, a former C.I.A. director; George Soros, a billionaire Democratic donor; and James R. Clapper Jr., a former director of national intelligence.
The top counts contained in the indictment, such as use of a weapon of mass destruction, carry a potential maximum life sentence; and if Mr. Sayoc were to be convicted on a combination of certain of the counts, he would face a mandatory life term, prosecutors said.
The indictment also charges Mr. Sayoc with using a destructive device in furtherance of a crime of violence; interstate transportation of explosives; unlawful use of the mails; and other counts.
Prosecutors have said Mr. Sayoc had planned his terror campaign for at least three months, and The New York Times has reported that he had prepared a list of about 100 potential targets and that the F.B.I. was in the process of alerting people whose names were found on the list.
''Sayoc's alleged conduct put numerous lives at risk,'' Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States attorney for the Southern District of New York, said on Friday. ''It was also an assault on a nation that values the rule of law, a free press, and tolerance of differences without rancor or resort to violence.''
Follow Benjamin Weiser on Twitter: @benweisernyt
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Man Accused of Mailing Bombs To Critics of Trump Is Indicted
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Kerncentrale rendeert niet - de Volkskrant - Blendle
De discussie over de bouw van kerncentrales is weer opgelaaid. Maar in Nederland is de productie en verkoop van stroom overgelaten aan de markt en kerncentrales vergen een enorme investering. Concurreren met wind- en zonne-energie is hier vrijwel onmogelijk.
VIDEO - The 'world's first' A.I. news anchor has gone live in China
A TV anchor has joined a Chinese news agency, but with a twist: he isn't human. China's state-run Xinhua News Agency has launched an artificial intelligence (AI) anchor, a move it claims to be a world first.
"English AI Anchor" debuted Thursday at the World Internet Conference in the country's eastern Zhejiang Province.
Modeled on the agency's Zhang Zhao presenter, the new anchor learns from live videos and is able to work 24 hours a day, reporting via social media and on the Xinhua website. "'He' learns from live broadcasting videos by himself and can read texts as naturally as a professional news anchor," the company said in an online statement.
TWEET"The development of the media industry calls for continuous innovation and deep integration with the international advanced technologies," the AI anchor said in his first broadcast.
"I will work tirelessly to keep you informed as texts will be typed into my system uninterrupted. I look forward to bringing you the brand new news experiences."
Xinhua developed the robot anchor with Chinese search engine Sogou.com and has posted two more reports from the AI broadcaster on its Twitter feed. One covers China's announcement that it will launch its first Mars probe in 2020 and ends with the AI anchor paying tribute to Chinese journalists.
"Before we go, I'd like to send my good wishes to all of the journalists across the country. As an AI anchor under development I know there is a lot for me to improve," he said.
VIDEO - Ice Cube Targets Trump in Song 'Arrest the President': 'That 'N***a Is Russian Intelligence'
Brendon Thorne/Getty ImagesRapper Ice Cube takes aim at President Donald Trump in his latest politically charged song ''Arrest the President,'' which fantasizes about arresting the president on grounds of Russian collusion.The song, which is one of the tracks featured on Ice Cube's upcoming studio album, Everythang's Corrupt, calls on FBI Special Counsel Robert Mueller to arrest Trump on grounds of colluding with the Russian government:
Arrest the president, you got the evidenceThat nigga is Russian intelligenceWhen it rains it poursDid you know the new white was orange?Boy, you're showing your horns
It goes on to claim that Trump and his officials treat the White House with a lack of respect:
Let's meet at the White HouseRun in and turn the lights outMan, they treat it like a trap houseThese motherfuckers never take the trash out
Ice Cube, whose real name is O'Shea Jackson Sr., has long courted controversy with his aggressive style of gangster rap, which regularly involves derision and threats against law enforcement with songs such as 'Fuck Tha Police.''Despite vociferously opposing his candidacy, the BIG3 is a 3-on-3 basketball league co-founder has previously spoken in positive terms about Trump's achievements, describing him as the embodiment of the American dream.
''[Trump] is rich, powerful; do what you want to do; say what you want to say; be how you want to be,'' Cube said in 2016, as Trump was campaigning for the presidency. ''That's kind of been the American Dream.''
Vote, but do not vote for this man! pic.twitter.com/YkvNpiVz4s
'-- Ice Cube (@icecube) November 8, 2016
Ice Cube was also an outspoken critic of Hillary Clinton, accusing her of helping ''justify'' the police brutality that led to the rise of Black Lives Matter movement while her husband Bill was in office.
Follow Ben Kew on Facebook, Twitter at @ben_kew, or email him at email@example.com.
VIDEO - (19) Caleb Hull ð ð¼ð²ð on Twitter: ". @DanCrenshawTX: "There's a lot of lessons to learn here. Not just that the left and the right can still agree on some things, but also this, Americans can forgive one another. We can remember what
@DanCrenshawTX: "There's a lot of lessons to learn here. Not just that the left and the right can still agree on some things, but also this, Americans can forgive one another. We can remember what brings us together as a country and still see the good in each other."
VIDEO - Massive Protest In Seattle Demanding Trump Allow Robert Mueller To Finish His Investigation! - YouTube
November 10, 2018 2018-11-10T11:29:08-05:00 https://images.c-span.org/Files/dbb/20181110112945001_hd.jpg President Trump and French President Macron met in Paris, ahead of the WWI Armistice Day 100th anniversary.President Trump and French President Macron met in Paris, ahead of the WWI Armistice Day 100th anniversary.
President Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron worked Saturday to ease tensions over their comments about European security that threatened to divert attention from a weekend ceremony marking 100 years since the end of World War I. (Nov.10)
VIDEO - Girl With Tourettes Has Incredible Sense Of Humor About Her Inability To Make An Omelette : funny
I don't know if I really had tourettes or what was wrong with me, but for about a year around age 12 I developed a tick. I would make a high pitched noise, sort of like the girl in the video with the 'woo' but I would keep my mouth closed and basically "hmm" as high as possible. I didn't know why I was doing it, I just felt a strong compulsion to do it like needing to scratch an itch - sometimes I didn't even notice I was doing it unless other people mentioned it.
It started off very rarely and got worse and worse for awhile, and then happened less and less until it went away. I don't think I did anything specific that got rid of it. My mom took me to a psychologist or whatever once, I was also having trouble completing tests at school when I never had before; just couldn't focus. I don't remember what they said other than asking a bunch of questions and saying basically, 'well... let's see where it goes'; but then it ended up fixing itself more or less. Although after I started noticing it and getting embarrassed by it I would try harder and harder not to do it, I don't know if it was really just that easy for me to stop or what. I remember: trying to stop myself from doing it was like this rush of blood to my head, like the emotional equivalent of a boiling kettle whistling... like I was about to pop. But if I could recognize the urge and then distract myself then I could stop myself from doing it.
I can't speak for people with more severe tourettes.
VIDEO - NH judge orders Amazon to give Echo recordings in double homicide case
Timothy Verrill accused of killing two women in Farmington in 2017
NH judge orders Amazon to give Echo recordings in double homicide case
Timothy Verrill accused of killing two women in Farmington in 2017
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WEBVTT WMUR'S MIKE CRONIN IS LIVE WITH THE RULING JUST HANDED DOWN. MIKE C: AS TECHNOLOGY EVOLVES, SO TOO DOES THE WAY IT'S USED IN THE COURTROO THIS COULD BE A SIGNIFICANT PIECE OF EVIDENCE IF PROSECUTORS ARE RIGHT. 48-YEAR-OLD CHRISTINE SULLIVAN AND 32-YEAR-OLD JENNA PELLEGRINI WERE STABBED TO DEATH AT A HOME IN FARMINGTON IN JANUARY O 2017. TIMOTHY VERRILL IS CHARGED WITH FIRST-DEGREE MURDER. HE PLEADED NOT GUILTY AND IS AWAITING TRIAL. THE STATE BELIEVES AN AMAZON ECHO SMART SPEAKER, WHICH USES ALEXA VOICE COMMAND, MAY HAVE RECORDED AUDIO OF SULLIVAN'S MURDER AS WELL AS ANYTHING THAT HAPPENED BEFORE OR AFTER IT. STATE POLICE HAVE THE SPEAKER, AND A JUDGE AGREED TO LET THEM ACCESS THE RECORDINGS BY ORDERING AMAZON TO TURN THEM OVER FROM ITS SERVER. PROF. SCHERR: I THINK MOST PEOPLE PROBABLY DON'T EV REALIZE THAT ALEXA IS TAKING ACCOUNT OF WHAT'S GOING ON IN YOUR HOUSE, IN ADDITION RESPONDING TO YOUR DEMANDS AND COMMANDS. MIKE C: AMAZON SAYS IT WON'T RELEASE ANY INFORMATION UNTIL A VALID LEGAL DEMAND HAS BEEN PROPERLY SER
NH judge orders Amazon to give Echo recordings in double homicide case
Timothy Verrill accused of killing two women in Farmington in 2017
DOVER, N.H. '--An Amazon Echo device could play a role in a double homicide case in Farmington.
A judge Friday ordered Amazon to turn over recordings that might have been captured by an Echo smart speaker in the Farmington house where two women were stabbed to death in January 2017.
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Timothy Verrill, of Dover, is accused of first-degree murder in the stabbing deaths of Jenna Pellegrini, 32, and Christine Sullivan, 48. He has pleaded not guilty.
Prosecutors said they believe the Echo device, which listens for Alexa voice commands, might have recorded audio of Sullivan's death, as well as anything that happened before or after it.
State police have the speaker, and the judge agreed to let them access the recordings and ordered Amazon to turn over any recordings on its servers.
Experts said the case reveals some of the implications of having such devices in people's homes.
"I think most people probably don't even realize that Alexa is taking account of what's going on in your house, in addition to responding to your demands and commands," said Albert Scherr of the University of New Hampshire School of Law.
Amazon officials said the company won't release any information until a valid legal demand has been properly served.
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