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Westlake Legal Group > Department of Health and Human Services

Planned Parenthood Prematurely Withdraws From Family Planning Program

Westlake Legal Group defund-planned-parenthood-620x317 Planned Parenthood Prematurely Withdraws From Family Planning Program Title X stanley bastian Politics planned parenthood michael mcshane HHS Government Front Page Stories Featured Story donald trump Department of Health and Human Services democrats Allow Media Exception Alex M. Azar Abortion

FILE – In this Feb. 11, 2017, file photo, protesters carry signs outside a Planned Parenthood health center in the Van Nuys section of Los Angeles. If a Supreme Court majority shaped by President Donald Trump overturns or weakens the right to abortion, the fight over its legalization could return to the states. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel, File)

One of the goals that a lot of us on the pro-life side have been agitating for for years is getting the federal government out of the business of funding Planned Parenthood. One of their major sources of income is via grants to provide “family planning” services under Title X of the 1970 Public Health Service Act. This served as a two-fer for Planned Parenthood. First, it let the federal government pay them to establish clinics and provide loss-leader services while giving them the ability to market their primary line of business: abortion. Even though Title X money couldn’t be used for abortions, Title X money was used to subsidize facilities and staff that, directly or indirectly, participated in abortions.

In December 2018, President Trump’s Department of Health and Human Services began the process of rewriting Title X grant regulations to require that Title X grantees not share facilities, personnel, or corporate governance with abortion providers. It was squarely aimed at Planned Parenthood but I’m sure a lot of other “women’s health centers” were caught in this as well.

In doing this, HHS took advantage of a Supreme Court decision that had started during the Reagan Administration and wasn’t decided until 1991.

[Let me take a short side trip here an note that for all the people ragging on President Trump about his unworthiness to be president, explain how Trump was able to to in less than three years what George W. Bush–who is often held up as an evangelical exemplar–didn’t even attempt to do in eight. And I say this as someone who was a Bush supporter and consider him to be one of the most admirable men to have held the office in the past 50 years.]

The rule was issued in February of this year and was promptly challenged in court. Because not only is abortion a constitutional right, getting federal money is also a right. They were boatraced by the Sixth Circuit but there was always hope that the Ninth Circuit would uphold some order by a Seattle or San Francisco judge declaring a nationwide injunction. A couple of Obama judges (yes, Chief Justice Roberts there are Obama judges) did just that. On April 23, Obama-appointed Oregon district court udge Michael McShane issued a nationwide injunction and on April 25 Obama-appointed Washington district court judge Stanley Bastian did the same. But this time the unexpected happened. The Ninth Circuit removed the injunction ruling that, in light of the 1991 Rust v. Sullivan case, that the administration was very likely to prevail.

The dam has finally broken. Planned Parenthood has announced that they are out of Title X.

Planned Parenthood said all of its clinics will formally leave Title X, the marquee federal program dedicated to providing birth control to low-income women. A change to the program last year requires beneficiaries to comply with a so-called “gag order” on abortion services — something that Planned Parenthood said it isn’t willing to do. The clinic’s exit will result in a loss of millions of federal dollars.

In a conference call with reporters on Monday, Planned Parenthood’s new leader, Alexis McGill Johnson, announced all the health care clinic’s affiliates would be sending letters to the Department of Health and Human Services Monday, formally announcing their resignation from Title X. She warned that without Planned Parenthood, low-income women in rural areas would struggle to find affordable birth control options.

As Jeanne Mancini, President of the March for Life observed: “Planned Parenthood, our nation’s largest abortion provider, today made a choice not to separate its abortion operation from Title X services, and in doing declined Title X funding, which makes up approximately four percent of their annual budget. Abortion is neither healthcare nor family planning and taxpayer dollars should not support abortion. Leana Wen’s recent firing and Planned Parenthood’s decision today doubles down on their ultimate goal, which is political abortion advocacy, not healthcare.”

Personally, I’m a huge skeptic about the validity of the federal government trying to reduce birthrates in any demographic segment. It smacks of paternalism and of the kind of eugenics program that eventually becomes involuntary sterilization and euthanasia. There is literally no service provided by Title X that is uniquely available there. I have no idea why we think mucking about in the sex lives of the poor is a worthy endeavor. That aside, it has always been abhorrent that we were allowing Title X to be used as a recruiting ground for abortion.

Despite my dislike of Title X, Planned Parenthood leaving will be a null set. There are more than ample community-based health nonprofits who will step up now that the abortion behemoth is out of the market. Perhaps women in need of prenatal care will actually start getting that rather than steered towards abortion. Maybe cutting off the feeder system will actually reduce the number of abortions. Maybe some of the monsters who worked to inveigle women into getting abortions will find themselves impoverished and homeless (though I doubt it).

Regardless, it is a step toward decency and even though a future Democrat president may change this rule, we’ve at least temporarily cut off this funding stream and we’ve created a new network of service providers who can compete with Planned Parenthood should the rule be reversed. For kids and families and the nation, this is win.

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The post Planned Parenthood Prematurely Withdraws From Family Planning Program appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group defund-planned-parenthood-300x153 Planned Parenthood Prematurely Withdraws From Family Planning Program Title X stanley bastian Politics planned parenthood michael mcshane HHS Government Front Page Stories Featured Story donald trump Department of Health and Human Services democrats Allow Media Exception Alex M. Azar Abortion   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Today’s the deadline: Will Planned Parenthood get defunded after all by … Planned Parenthood?

Westlake Legal Group defund-pp Today’s the deadline: Will Planned Parenthood get defunded after all by … Planned Parenthood? Title X The Blog planned parenthood ninth circuit donald trump Department of Health and Human Services defund

This is akin to finding out that Dan Hedaya was Keyser Soze. The years-long effort to defund Planned Parenthood may have finally succeeded, the Daily Beast reported over the weekend, because the nation’s leading abortion mill may refuse to take the money. A new rule prohibiting abortion counseling and referrals from Title X providers will remain in place, and Planned Parenthood management may refuse to participate as long as it does — which they have to decide today:

Despite years of fighting calls to “defund Planned Parenthood,” the reproductive healthcare organization may now voluntarily remove itself from a massive government funding program, after a federal appeals court allowed a controversial new abortion rule to go forward.

For months, Planned Parenthood has been battling a new Trump administration rule that bars taxpayer-funded family planning clinics from talking with their patients about abortion, or referring them to abortion providers. Planned Parenthood deemed the measure a “gag rule” and said it would pull out of Title X—the program that administers the funds—rather than comply with the new regulations. …

In a statement, Planned Parenthood leadership said they would consider their options and announce next steps on Monday. “We refuse to cower to this president,” acting PPFA President and CEO Alexis McGill Johnson said. “The gag rule is unethical, dangerous, and we will not subject our patients to it.”

At issue are two decisions by the Ninth Circuit over the rule change, both of which favor the Trump administration. Planned Parenthood sued to overturn the rule, but the appellate court initially decided that the rule could be enforced while Planned Parenthood’s legal challenge proceeded, refusing to impose a temporary restraining order. Planned Parenthood then demanded an en banc hearing of that decision, but the court denied the request — unanimously, it seems:

“The full court has been advised of the motions for full court en banc reconsideration and no judge has requested a vote on whether to rehear the matter as a full en banc court,” Chief Judge Sidney Thomas wrote in the brief order Friday. “The motions for full court en banc reconsideration are denied.”

Friday’s ruling leaves Planned Parenthood to decide whether it will follow through with its promised departure from the program, which could come on Monday. That’s the deadline for providers participating in Title X to provide compliance assurance to HHS regarding the rule.

Why didn’t Planned Parenthood appeal directly to the Supreme Court? Come on, man. If the Ninth Circuit can’t find a reason to block a Trump administration policy, what chance did an appeal to the Supreme Court have? That’s what makes this statement on the denial for an en banc hearing so interesting. Planned Parenthood couldn’t get even one judge on the Ninth Circuit to vote to rehear their case. That’s not exactly a vote of confidence in their argument on the merits.

On Thursday, before the denial of the en banc request, Planned Parenthood sounded a defiant note:

They also issued a letter earlier in the month, claiming that if the rule remained in place, they would “have no option but to withdraw from the Title X program.” HHS issued a letter in response essentially daring them to do so:

“If the seven Planned Parenthood direct grantees insist on providing abortion referrals even within a federally funded program, and feel so strongly that they would withdraw from the program and the public they serve, that is their own choice, not a consequence of the Rule,” attorneys for HHS wrote.

Planned Parenthood predicted their withdrawal would create the demise of Title X, but that’s nonsense. The government spends hundreds of millions of dollars on contraception through the program, the kind of demand that creates supply organically. If Planned Parenthood exits the program, other clinics will open to fill the gap — clinics that will comply with the rule not to provide abortion counseling or referrals but stick to contraception, which is Title X’s mission in the first place. There may be some disruption in the short term, but that would be within Planned Parenthood’s power to fix by complying with the rule.

What Planned Parenthood wants to do is to hold women hostage in order to dictate terms to the Trump administration and to set the rules themselves. That’s not how regulatory policy works, or at least not how it’s supposed to work. Corporations don’t get to hold social programs hostage to further their profit goals. Imagine the outcry if McDonalds attempted to block food stamps unless the government allowed EBT sales at its restaurants.

Planned Parenthood will have to decide today whether it will turn down those hundreds of millions of dollars every year, or whether it will comply with the rules. Having climbed this far out on the limb, it will be tough to retreat — but equally tough to saw the limb off, too. They may just choose to defund themselves and save conservatives the trouble, which might be the most popular move that organization will have done with those on the Right in their long existence. And let’s not forget that Donald Trump’s decision to impose this rule is what’s forcing Planned Parenthood to make this decision — and letting Congress off the hook for it, too.

The post Today’s the deadline: Will Planned Parenthood get defunded after all by … Planned Parenthood? appeared first on Hot Air.

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Pre-empting Dems on health care? HHS announces “pathways” for Canada drug purchases

Westlake Legal Group trump-point2 Pre-empting Dems on health care? HHS announces “pathways” for Canada drug purchases The Blog pharmaceuticals Imports Drugs donald trump Department of Health and Human Services Canada Alex Azar 2020 election

Democrats ate the GOP’s lunch on health-care messaging in 2018’s midterms. The Trump administration might be preparing better for the 2020 election. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar rolled out a new initiative today that would allow for prescription purchases from Canada, addressing a key Democratic talking point on the cost of health care:

“President Trump has been clear: for too long American patients have been paying exorbitantly high prices for prescription drugs that are made available to other countries at lower prices. When we released the President’s drug pricing blueprint – PDF for putting American patients first, we said we are open to all potential solutions to combat high drug prices that protect patient safety, are effective at delivering lower prices, and respect choice, innovation and access,” said Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar. “Today’s announcement outlines the pathways the Administration intends to explore to allow safe importation of certain prescription drugs to lower prices and reduce out of pocket costs for American patients. This is the next important step in the Administration’s work to end foreign freeloading and put American patients first.”

The Action Plan outlines the government’s intention to pursue two pathways to allow safe drug importation from foreign markets:

  1. Through a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM), HHS and FDA would propose to rely on the authority under current federal law (Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (“FD&C Act”) Section 804) that would, when the rule is finalized, authorize pilot (or demonstration) projects developed by states, wholesalers or pharmacists and submitted for HHS review, outlining how they would import certain drugs from Canada that are versions of FDA-approved drugs that are manufactured consistent with the FDA approval. The NPRM would include conditions to ensure the importation poses no additional risk to the public’s health and safety and that the demonstration projects would achieve significant cost savings to the American consumer.
  2. Through guidance, FDA would provide recommendations to manufacturers of FDA-approved drugs who seek to import into the U.S. versions of those drugs they sell in foreign countries. Under this pathway, manufacturers would use a new National Drug Code (NDC) for those products, potentially allowing them to offer a lower price than what their current distribution contracts require. To use this pathway, the manufacturer or entity authorized by the manufacturer would establish with the FDA that the foreign version is the same as the U.S. version and appropriately label the drug for sale in the U.S. This pathway could be particularly helpful to patients with significantly high cost prescription drugs. This would potentially include medications like insulin used to treat diabetes, as well as those used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, cardiovascular disorders, and cancer.

The crescendo for action on this issue has built for some time. It came up in the ObamaCare debate, but Democrats successfully capitalized on growing anger over escalating prices in the US in recent months. Trump had also campaigned on the issue in 2016 but hadn’t taken any action, leaving him politically vulnerable, the Associated Press noted:

The administration’s move comes as the industry is facing a litany of consumer complaints over drug prices, as well as legislation from both parties in Congress to rein in costs. President Donald Trump is supporting a Senate bill to cap medication costs for Medicare recipients. …

As a candidate, Trump called for allowing Americans to import prescription drugs from abroad, and recently he’s backed a Florida law allowing state residents to gain access to medications from Canada.

Trump spiked the football shortly afterward:

The question of pharmaceutical importation has its complexities, and it might not be a great idea in terms of long-term policy outcomes. For one thing, drug prices in Canada are artificially low thanks to intervention by the Canadian government, which will be tougher to maintain if demand increases exponentially via re-importation into the US. (Canadians in particular might not be very happy about what happens to their drug prices.) It doesn’t solve the major problems in pharmaceutical production costs, which are consolidation in the industry, copyright issues, and bureaucratic delays in FDA approvals, among others. It’s a Band-Aid over a gaping wound.

However, it’s going to be a very popular Band-Aid in the short run. The new HHS effort also lends itself to a slow rollout, which will play right into Trump’s need to pre-empt Democrats on health care in this cycle, as the Washington Post notes, and that’s very much the purpose of this and other initiatives coming down the pike:

White House advisers, scrambling to create a health-care agenda for President Trump to promote on the campaign trail, are meeting at least daily with the aim of rolling out a measure every two to three weeks until the 2020 election.

One of the initiatives would allow states to import lower-priced drugs from Canada and other countries and bar Medicare from paying more than any other country for prescription drugs — controversial ideas in line with Democratic proposals. Yet it remains unclear the administration has the legal authority to execute some of these policies without Congress. …

One lobbyist, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, described being stunned at a recent White House meeting when Domestic Policy Council Director Joe Grogan said the administration would not let Democrats run to the president’s left on lowering the prices of prescription medicines.

In another tense meeting, top pharmaceutical executives were told bluntly “it wasn’t in the industry’s best interests” to block the bipartisan Senate bill backed by Trump. If it failed, they were told, they’d see “the president of the United States negotiating with Nancy Pelosi [on allowing the government to negotiate drug prices in Medicare],” said a person familiar with the meeting.

It might be better for Trump if Congress balks at the initiatives, or if courts block it. That way he gets the benefit of fighting for the people without the risk of incurring the long-term negative impacts of the policies themselves. It also dilutes Democrats’ ability to use health care as a sledgehammer in suburban districts as they successfully did in 2018. In terms of electoral strategy, posturing usually beats legislating, and it certainly beats dealing with unintended consequences. Barack Obama knew that well enough to delay ObamaCare’s rollout until a year after his re-election.

The post Pre-empting Dems on health care? HHS announces “pathways” for Canada drug purchases appeared first on Hot Air.

Westlake Legal Group trump-point2-300x173 Pre-empting Dems on health care? HHS announces “pathways” for Canada drug purchases The Blog pharmaceuticals Imports Drugs donald trump Department of Health and Human Services Canada Alex Azar 2020 election   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Despite Democratic Claims, New Report Reveals 95% of Border Children Have Been Reunited with Family or Sponsors

Westlake Legal Group child-3426400_1280-620x413 Despite Democratic Claims, New Report Reveals 95% of Border Children Have Been Reunited with Family or Sponsors Uncategorized Politics Illegal Immigration House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Front Page Stories Featured Story Department of Health and Human Services border security border detention Allow Media Exception

 

 

A report from Republicans on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee reveals that the Trump administration’s reunited the vast majority of children at the border with their parents or a guardian.

Data from the Department of Health and Human Services indicates that 95% of kids released from custody have been “reunified with an individual sponsor or released to a parent.”

The document identifies more than 2,500 children separated at the border. According to the metrics — of 1,619 — 99% have been discharged.

From the report:

Of the 1,603 discharged children, 1,546 children—or 95 percent—were either reunified with an individual sponsor or released to a parent. Specifically, 1,061 children were released to a parent and 485 children were reunified with an individual sponsor,”

So what of the remainder?

Of the remaining 73 children who had not been reunited with an individual sponsor or released to a parent, HHS provided the following data:

Westlake Legal Group 25aa Despite Democratic Claims, New Report Reveals 95% of Border Children Have Been Reunited with Family or Sponsors Uncategorized Politics Illegal Immigration House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Front Page Stories Featured Story Department of Health and Human Services border security border detention Allow Media Exception   16 children remain in the care of HHS’s Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR), of which four children were determined to not have been separated from their parent;
Westlake Legal Group 25aa Despite Democratic Claims, New Report Reveals 95% of Border Children Have Been Reunited with Family or Sponsors Uncategorized Politics Illegal Immigration House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Front Page Stories Featured Story Department of Health and Human Services border security border detention Allow Media Exception   21 children sought a voluntary departure, meaning that the child went back to his or her home country;
Westlake Legal Group 25aa Despite Democratic Claims, New Report Reveals 95% of Border Children Have Been Reunited with Family or Sponsors Uncategorized Politics Illegal Immigration House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Front Page Stories Featured Story Department of Health and Human Services border security border detention Allow Media Exception   20 children aged out, meaning that these children turned 18 and by law ORR cannot keep them in their custody;

Furthermore, the report corrects a misconception that 30 minors remain cruelly separated from their parents:

Although Democrats allege that 30 children remain separated from their families, these children remain separated largely because either the parents pose a danger to their child or the parents have expressed an intent not to reunify with their child.

We have problems at the border. And adults who’ve attempted to sneak into the country have been detained — as they were under Obama as well.

The situation is a mess. But thanks to the report for providing a better understanding of what’s going on amid the crisis.

-ALEX

 

See 3 more pieces from me:

Elderly Home Depot Founder Punches Back At The Boycott Over His Support Of Trump: ‘It Sure As Hell Is Not Going To Stop Me’

Woman Sues Hospital: If She’d Known Her 4-Year-Old Had Down Syndrome, She Would’ve Aborted Him

Missouri Police Department: Hiding Felony Suspect’s Loud Flatulence Ratted Him Out

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The post Despite Democratic Claims, New Report Reveals 95% of Border Children Have Been Reunited with Family or Sponsors appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group child-3426400_1280-300x200 Despite Democratic Claims, New Report Reveals 95% of Border Children Have Been Reunited with Family or Sponsors Uncategorized Politics Illegal Immigration House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Front Page Stories Featured Story Department of Health and Human Services border security border detention Allow Media Exception   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Overdue: Trump orders overhaul of organ-donation system in US

Westlake Legal Group kidney-transplant Overdue: Trump orders overhaul of organ-donation system in US transplant The Blog REFORM organ donors Medicare end stage renal disease donald trump dialysis Department of Health and Human Services

No politics here, and no recriminations for this being overdue either. It’s just good to see the federal government take a hard look at a critical medical issue and take steps to save lives in a real manner — especially for those of us with real-life transplant issues:

The Trump administration this week will announce a series of initiatives to encourage more kidney transplants and treatment at home, the start of a process intended to overhaul a market in which the federal government spends more than $100 billion per year.

President Donald Trump is slated to unveil the strategy in a speech Wednesday morning and is eyeing additional actions like a possible executive order, according to four individuals with knowledge of the upcoming announcement.

HHS also will announce new payment models intended to shift treatment for patients with chronic kidney disease away from standalone clinics, arguing that receiving dialysis at home is both safer for patients and more cost-effective, individuals familiar with the plan said.

We’ve been through four transplants in our family, all involving the First Mate — three kidneys and a pancreas, the latter of which cured her lifelong brittle diabetes. We do worry about availability if the need arises for another kidney, and about the efficacy of long-term dialysis if a wait ensues. The altruistic model of organ donations has its merits, but it combines up with bureaucratic snarls developed over several decades to create constant shortfalls of both cadaver and live organ donations.

The new policy won’t disturb the altruistic model, but it will start addressing the bureaucratic snarls. It’s already getting praise for its reach:

In all, the government believes it can make 17,000 more kidneys and 11,000 more hearts, livers, lungs and other organs available for transplant every year, as well as save money for Medicare and Medicaid, which cover much of the cost of dialysis and transplantation. The United States has a severe shortage of tranplant organs. More than 113,000 people are waiting for them; most need kidneys.

“These are all good ideas. I’m impressed, very impressed,” said Tommy Thompson, who worked to boost organ donation when he was secretary of Health and Human Services under President George W. Bush. “They are finally modernizing organ procurement.” …

A key to boosting transplantation will be cracking down on “organ procurement organizations,” the 58 nonprofit groups that collect organs from deceased donors and send them to transplant centers for implantation. Each OPO holds a monopoly over a chunk of U.S. territory and collects and reportsits own data on how successful it is. Some poor performers have manipulated the numbers, researchers have shown. …

Trump also will instruct Azar to improve the process of matching kidney donors to recipients, as well as the speed of delivery, to reduce discards of usable organs. A Washington Post analysis of 2.7 million death records from 2016 showed that by expanding the pool of donors to older and slightly less healthy people, the transplant system could yield more than 75,000 organs for transplant annually–enough to put the nation on pace to wipe out organ waiting lists within a few years.

Another Trump proposal would increase payments to live donors of kidneys and livers to cover more of their expenses, possibly including lost wages and child care.

For those advocating a more market-based approach of flat-out paying for organ donations, this will fall short of their attempts to shift entirely to a new model. However, increasing the scope of cost-covering payments will likely expand the live-donor base in the meantime, and it also shows that the administration is looking at costs from a practical and holistic point of view.

The shift to home-based peritoneal dialysis is likely to create more controversy. Clinics have medical staff on hand for immediate address of emergency situations that can come up, but it’s a lot costlier too. (The Washington Post report details the differences.) As the home dialysis technology has improved, the incentives have not, leaving patients with little choice and the government on the hook for the biggest bills. It’s also very possible that the incentives could shift so dramatically in the other direction that patients who really require clinic supervision might find it difficult to qualify for it, but this is an area worth exploring for a happy medium.

Kudos for Donald Trump and his administration for taking a fresh look at this situation. That’s not to blame previous administrations for failing to address it, as the system works more often than it doesn’t, but it’s better to fix things before they really break. Our family will be very grateful if these reforms work out, as will taxpayers if we can both save lives and reduce costs at the same time.

The post Overdue: Trump orders overhaul of organ-donation system in US appeared first on Hot Air.

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Alyssa Milano: I tried to get into the Homestead housing center for immigrant kids but they wouldn’t let me

Westlake Legal Group a-4 Alyssa Milano: I tried to get into the Homestead housing center for immigrant kids but they wouldn’t let me The Blog refugee migrant immigration homestead DHS detention Department of Health and Human Services democratic debate children Alyssa Milano

Via the Blaze, what is this country coming to when Alyssa Milano can’t gain access to a government facility at a moment’s notice?

I can’t embed the video of her talking about this but clicking on the link in the tweet below will send you to it.

It’s taken me two and a half years to process the fact that Trump is president and I still haven’t fully succeeded. Now I need to start processing the fact that Alyssa Milano is a powerbroker in the Democratic primaries:

Alyssa Milano arrived in Miami ahead of Wednesday night’s first Democratic presidential primary debate – and Sen. Bernie Sanders is aggressively seeking her endorsement, The Post has learned.

Sanders has personally phoned Milano several times in recent weeks in a bid win her backing, a source close to “Charmed” actress said.

“Of all the Democratic candidates, the one pounding down her door the hardest is Bernie Sanders,” the source said.

Socialism’s takeover of the United States may hinge on the approval of an entertainer whose most prominent credit is “Who’s the Boss?” Sanders isn’t the only candidate paying attention to her either. Remember, Milano was reportedly one of the people who twisted Joe Biden’s arm behind the scenes to drop his support for the Hyde Amendment. Winning the Alyssa Milano primary is a big deal in 2019, it seems. Which, on the one hand, is understandable as a matter of sheer social-media numbers: She has more than 3.5 million Twitter followers, nearly a million more than the Speaker of the House, and she’s highly politically active on her account.

On the other hand, this is someone whose idea of activism is to call for a sex strike to protest abortion laws. She’s “Extremely Online,” as the kids like to say, both for good and for ill. But then, so is AOC and she has outsized influence in the Democratic Party too.

The Homestead facility she gatecrashed today is in south Florida, close enough to tonight’s debate that various Democratic candidates have swung by while they’re in town to register their concern and say some harsh things about Trump’s stubborn resistance to open borders. NPR published a warts-and-all backgrounder on Homestead back in February that’s worth your time. It’s the largest housing facility for migrant children in the U.S., it’s run for profit, and the kids obviously don’t want to be there. But it seems to be clean and well-kept, at least by the standards of immigration facilities. It’s not one of the places that’s been noted recently for lacking toothbrushes or making kids sleep on concrete floors. It’s not even really a detention center, notes Vox’s Dara Lind. It’s run by HHS and follows standard operating procedure in housing migrant children temporarily; it’s not some threadbare facility that the feds scrambled to assemble in order to cope with the current crisis. (It was opened by the Obama administration, in fact.) “If you’re going to go to an HHS facility that is in status quo the alternative to detention and characterize it as ‘detention,’” notes Lind, “it raises much bigger [questions] about what you think should happen instead.” Indeed. Democrats have a lot to say about immigration generally but not so much about the what-should-happen-instead part.

It raises a question for Milano too. Considering that Homestead is by no means the worst of the worst and that it’s already received heavy media attention lately due to the visits from Democratic candidates, why did she choose to try to get in there instead of into one of those threadbare facilities? What “awareness” is she raising by showing up at Homestead? Did she simply go where the cameras were, or did she say to one of her PR people that she wanted to try to crash an immigration center, any immigration center, and they trouped off to the first one they thought of?

The latest prominent visitor to Homestead was Bernie Sanders’s wife Jane, who vowed that his very first act as president would be to shut down all government housing centers for migrant children. In lieu of an exit question, here’s Josh Hawley laying into his Democratic colleagues in Congress for bitching endlessly about how DHS is coping with the crisis while doing zippo to actually help. As for Milano, enjoy this emoting while it lasts: A completely inevitable side effect of Trump losing in 2020 will be all of this sudden liberal concern for how immigrants are treated disappearing into thin air.

The post Alyssa Milano: I tried to get into the Homestead housing center for immigrant kids but they wouldn’t let me appeared first on Hot Air.

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