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Arizona’s Senators sound off on Title 42 decision

Senators Mark Kelly and Kyrsten Sinema spoke exclusively with FOX 9's Adam Klepp about the decision to end Title 42 expulsions at the border

YUMA, Ariz. (KECY, KYMA) - Even with Title 42 still in place, migrants continue to illegally cross into Yuma trying to seek asylum.

With the public health law used to deport over 1.7 million migrants over the last two years set to expire in May, Arizona's Senators are sounding the alarm.

“This administration does not have a plan to handle an increase in migrants at our border,” Senator Mark Kelly said.

“We have not seen a comprehensive plan to deal with an influx of migrants," Senator Kyrsten Sinema said.

Migrants board a bus after being apprehended near the Morelos Dam in Yuma, AZ.

Both Senators spoke with Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas Wednesday.

And Senator Sinema says his team accepted an invitation to a border hearing hosted by her in May, where she expects to hear what the department plans to do about an influx in asylum seekers at the wall.

“We anticipate in that hearing, in the second week in May, for there to be an opportunity for accountability and transparency,” Sinema said.

Senator Kelly says he’s not holding his breath.

“As far as on a scale of high-confidence to low-confidence, I’m in the low confidence realm of things,” Kelly said.

Immigration lawyers say title 42 prevented migrants from accessing their right to seek asylum.

“It’s a right under U.S. law, it’s a right under international law,” Eric Welsh, partner at Reeves Immigration Law Group said.

Eric Welsh works with clients seeking asylum in the United States.

He says not only could the removal of Title 42 motivate more migrants to make the journey to the U.S., but that the over one million migrants who have been subject to the policy could try and cross again.

“Essentially they’ve never made their claims," Welsh said. "They’ve been expelled, and been told they can process their refugee applications outside the united states.”

The proposed end date for Title 42 is May 23rd.

After that day all migrants who arrive at the border will have to have their asylum claims heard.

Yuma remains under a local emergency declared by Mayor Doug Nicholls in December due to the record number of apprehensions at the border.

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Adam Klepp

Adam Klepp is excited to start his first job in the broadcast news industry as the FOX9 at 9 anchor and as a reporter at 5 and 6 on News 11.


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