Chairman Nadler Floor Statement in Support of H.R. 1333, the NO BAN Act
Washington, April 21, 2021
Washington, D.C. - Today, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) delivered the following remarks on the House floor in support of H.R. 1333, the National Origin-Based Antidiscrimination for Nonimmigrants (NO BAN) Act:
"H.R. 1333, the 'National Origin-Based Antidiscrimination for Nonimmigrants Act,' or NO BAN Act, is an important step towards reining in executive overreach and preserving the power of Congress to establish our nation’s immigration laws.
"Section 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act—or INA—authorizes the president to suspend the entry of noncitizens when the president finds that their entry would be detrimental to U.S. interests.
"From 1952—when this provision was enacted—until January 2017, presidents of both parties invoked section 212(f) to exclude only narrow groups of individuals—such as human rights violators, North Korean officials, and individuals seeking to overthrow governments—for reasons that would clearly serve the national interest.
"But former-President Trump abused this authority, twisting it in ways that were never intended. He first used it to deliver on his campaign promise to ban Muslims from the United States—an immoral and disastrous policy that traumatized children and families and made us no safer—while weakening our standing in the world.
"The former President then used this section to rewrite immigration laws with which he disagreed. For example, the INA expressly provides asylum eligibility to any individual who arrives in the United States 'whether or not at a designated port of arrival.'
"However, President Trump invoked section 212(f) to deny asylum to persons who cross the southern border between ports of entry, in direct conflict with the statute. Fortunately, the judiciary agreed that this was unlawful and stopped the policy from taking effect.
"H.R. 1333 will prevent such executive overreach by amending section 212(f) to ensure it is used in a manner consistent with its intended purpose and historical norms.
"Although President Biden has repealed the egregious orders of the Trump era, including the Muslim Ban, we must pass the NO BAN Act to ensure that this authority is never abused again. In advancing this legislation today, we uphold our nation’s founding ideals and we reaffirm our commitment to the Rule of Law.
"This should not be a partisan issue. Members on both sides of the aisle should agree that no president—Republican or Democratic—should be permitted to usurp the powers of the legislative branch enshrined in the Constitution. The separation of powers is fundamental to our democratic republic and it must be protected.
"I would like to thank my friend and colleague, Representative Judy Chu for her leadership and her steadfast commitment to this issue. Her efforts led to the introduction of the NO BAN Act, and I urge all my colleagues to support this important legislation."I reserve the balance of my time."