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Biden campaign manager dodges question on whether immigration executive order will get president more votes

Biden campaign manager dodges question on whether immigration executive order will get president more votes

President Biden’s campaign manager on Wednesday appeared to dodge questions about whether the president’s new executive order giving illegal immigrants a pathway to citizenship was a political move aimed at shoring up more votes before Election Day on Nov. 5. 

Julie Chavez Rodriguez appeared on CBS News’ “America Decides” for an interview with Fin Gomez that aired Wednesday evening. 

Gomez asked Rodriguez why the president’s new policy was implemented now “four and a half months out from the Nov. 5 election.”

Rodriguez said immigration reform has been a major priority of the Biden administration since day 1. She also bashed former President Trump for encouraging Republicans to vote against a bipartisan immigration bill earlier this year.

Gomez asked whether Rodriguez believed Biden’s new policy would encourage “mixed-status families” who benefit from this to vote for the president.

Rodriguez said families who are eligible for Biden’s executive order “will be able to sleep better tonight knowing that they have an opportunity to help ensure that they are not separated by cruel policies.”

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“They will be able to hug each other a little bit tighter knowing that they can remain together as a whole family in this country as a result of this executive order. Those are the things that matter most,” Rodriguez said.

Gomez noted that many Latino voters are turning away from President Biden and asked Rodriguez to respond to critics who say the executive order is a “political move to maintain support among Latino voters.”

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Rodriguez again invoked the president’s track record on immigration since taking office, including expanding the Affordable Care Act for recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. 

At no point was the issue of border security brought up in the interview. Fox News Digital has reached out to Biden’s campaign team and the White House for additional comment.

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Biden announced Tuesday that his administration will allow U.S. citizens’ spouses without legal status to apply for permanent residency and eventually citizenship without having to first depart the country for up to 10 years. About 500,000 immigrants may benefit, according to senior administration officials.

To qualify, an immigrant must have lived in the U.S. for 10 years and be married to a U.S. citizen, both as of Monday. 

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The Obama-era DACA program, which has shielded from deportation hundreds of thousands of people who came to the United States as young children, required applicants to be in the U.S. on June 15, 2012, and continuously for the previous five years.

More than 1 million illegal immigrants living in the U.S. are married to American citizens, according to advocacy group FWD.us, meaning hundreds of thousands won’t qualify because they were in the U.S. for fewer than 10 years.

About 50,000 noncitizen children with parents who are married to a U.S. citizen could also potentially qualify, according to senior administration officials who briefed reporters on the condition of anonymity. 

Biden also announced new regulations that will allow some DACA beneficiaries and other young immigrants to more easily qualify for long-established work visas.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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