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What A Day: Drawn and bordered

Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) speaks alongside activists during a press conference held in response to President Biden's executive order limiting asylum at the U.S. southern border outside the U.S. Capitol June 4, 2024. (Francis Chung/POLITICO via AP Images)

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Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) speaks alongside activists during a press conference held in response to President Biden's executive order limiting asylum at the U.S. southern border outside the U.S. Capitol June 4, 2024. (Francis Chung/POLITICO via AP Images)


Biden issued an executive order limiting migrants’ access to asylum in the U.S. on Tuesday, in the most aggressive border crackdown of his presidency.

  • The order shuts down asylum requests at the border once a threshold of 2,500 unauthorized crossings per day has been exceeded. The current daily average is well above that, as it has been for most of Biden’s presidency, meaning the order will go into effect tonight at midnight. The ban is designed to snap off again when the number falls to 1,500 a day for at least a week. 

  • Biden wants to convince voters he’s serious about border security, just weeks before he hits the stage for a debate with disgraced former president Trump. The GOP nominee has turned to increasingly unhinged and racist rhetoric about migrants “poisoning the blood of our country” (a phrase that feels gross to even type). But voters call border security a top concern, and polls say Trump has the edge on this issue. That dynamic has put pressure on Biden to act.

  • Congressional Republicans sabotaged their own border legislation earlier this year thanks to Trump, who prefers campaigning on this problem over seeing someone else solve it. Biden said Republicans left him “no choice” but to act alone, and added: “I would have preferred to address this issue through bipartisan legislation.”

The move was met with mixed reactions.

  • Congressional Progressive Caucus chairwoman Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) slammed the move as “very, very disappointing.” She added that it “uses the same section of U.S. immigration laws that convicted felon Donald Trump used to implement the Muslim Ban and in attempts to cut off all access to asylum.” The ACLU vowed to sue. A similar action by Trump in 2018 was shot down by the courts, and plenty of critics think Biden’s order will be too.

  • Some border-state Democrats hailed the move. Sen. Mark Kelly (D-AZ) called it “a welcome action.” Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-AZ) called it a “step in the right direction.” A group of Nikki Haley supporters praised Biden for addressing one of their “top priorities.” Some Republicans argued that waiting until an election year shows Biden isn’t serious about this issue. Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) said: “It’s a little late, isn’t it, Mr. President?”


Meanwhile, as the political process churns on, some migrants who should qualify for asylum will have a much harder time claiming protection.


Attorney General Merrick Garland fired back at House Republicans threatening to hold him in contempt of Congress over access to records relating to President Biden’s classified-docs investigation. “I will not be intimidated,” Garland told a raucous hearing. And for good reason: a contempt citation would mean asking the nation’s top law enforcement official to arrest himself. Fun to see them try it!

President Biden denied being too old for the Oval Office by, uh, threatening to fight a Time reporter for asking about his age. “I can do it better than anybody you know,” the 81-year-old commander-in-chief said. “You’re looking at me, I can take you too.” Okay pal, let’s calm down and save that energy for the debates.

House and Senate Democrats are coordinating a legislative push to guarantee access to contraception, which is nearly certain to fail thanks to GOP opposition. The move forces Republicans to (once again) put themselves on the record opposing birth control — a risky bet during an election year in which reproductive rights are a top issue for many voters.

Hunter Biden’s wife called ex-Trump aide Garrett Ziegler a “Nazi piece of shit!” outside the courtroom where her husband is on trial for felony gun charges. “You have no right to be here,” she said, according to NBC News. Hunter Biden is suing Ziegler over his alleged role in publishing pictures and other materials from Hunter’s infamous laptop.

Republicans are preparing for the possibility, however remote, that Trump might have to accept the GOP nomination from a jail cell. RNC chairman Michael Whatley told Newsmax that the committee “will make whatever contingency planning we need to make.”

The Colorado Republican Party called for the burning of all Pride flags in a social media post, and blasted out a mass email titled “God hates pride,” to mark the start of Pride Month. What — and we cannot stress this enough — the fuck is wrong with these people.

Jon Stewart slammed the media for failing to call out Republicans’ lies about the 2020 election and other falsehoods, like Trump’s preposterous claim that he didn’t say Hillary Clinton should be locked up — despite literally running on the “lock her up” slogan for an entire election cycle.

A Food and Drug Administration advisory panel voted against recommending MDMA, the drug known as ecstasy or molly, as treatment for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, arguing the risks outweigh the benefits.

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