immigration

Do you support increasing foreign aid to Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala in an effort to reduce the flow of asylum seekers to the U.S.?

Yes

Yes, supports

Michael Bennet

U.S. senator, Colorado

Bennet signed onto a letter opposing President Trump's foreign aid cuts to Central American countries in April.

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Michael Bennet
Bennet

Joe Biden

Former vice president

“We have got to address the root causes of migration that push people to leave behind their homes and everything they know to undertake a dangerous journey for the chance at a better life, work that Vice President Biden led in the Obama-Biden Administration,” Biden's campaign website said. He wrote an op-ed for The Post in 2018, in which he said, “the cost of investing in a secure and prosperous Central America was modest compared with the cost of allowing violence and poverty to fester.”

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Joe Biden
Biden

Cory Booker

U.S. senator, New Jersey

“I support increasing foreign aid to Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala,” Booker told The Post. He signed onto a letter opposing President Trump's foreign aid cuts to Central American countries in April.

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Cory Booker
Booker

Steve Bullock

Governor, Montana

“I support increasing foreignaid to Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala,” Bullock told The Post. “We need to do more to address the root causes of immigration by helping to stabilize these countries that people are fleeing.  By retreating from the assistance that the US was providing, the Trump Administration has further destabilized the region and increased the immigration problem from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala.”

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Steve Bullock
Bullock

Pete Buttigieg

Mayor, South Bend, Ind.

“Ultimately, the only lasting way to address the issues posed by Central American migration is to help the people of Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala find safety and prosperity in their home countries,” Buttigieg told The Post. “Instead of disengaging, we should assist regional governments as they implement reforms and work to strengthen overall governance, including supporting and emboldening regional civil society organizations dedicated to human rights, good governance and democratic accountability.”

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Pete Buttigieg
Buttigieg

Julian Castro

Former mayor, San Antonio

“I’m the only candidate to propose a 21st-century Marshall Plan for Central America that creates a lasting and mutually beneficial partnership with the people of Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala,” Castro told The Post. “This plan would help build resilience in their communities and allow individuals to find opportunity at home.”

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Julian Castro
Castro

John Delaney

Former U.S. representative, Maryland

Delaney supports increasing foreign aid to Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, he told The Post. “Withdrawing foreign aid will make conditions in Central America worse, ultimately destabilizing the region and multiplying the number of people fleeing those countries – creating larger caravans in the future,” he said in 2018.

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John Delaney
Delaney

Tulsi Gabbard

U.S. representative, Hawaii

Gabbard supports increasing foreign aid to Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, she told The Post.

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Tulsi Gabbard
Gabbard

Kirsten Gillibrand

U.S. senator, New York

Gillibrand signed onto a letter opposing President Trump's foreign aid cuts to Central American countries in April.

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Kirsten Gillibrand
Gillibrand

Kamala D. Harris

U.S. senator, California

Harris signed onto a letter opposing President Trump's foreign aid cuts to Central American countries in April.

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Kamala Harris
Harris

John Hickenlooper (Dropped out)

Former governor, Colorado

Hickenlooper is no longer running for president. Hickenlooper supports increasing foreign aid to Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, he told The Post.

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John Hickenlooper
Hickenlooper

Jay Inslee

Governor, Washington state

“I will restore foreign assistance funding to nations that are the source of many recent immigrants and asylum seekers, especially children and whole families fleeing persecution in their home countries,” Inslee told The Post.

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Jay Inslee
Inslee

Amy Klobuchar

U.S. senator, Minnesota

Klobuchar supports increasing foreign aid to Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, her campaign told The Post. She signed onto a letter opposing President Trump's foreign aid cuts to Central American countries in April.

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Amy Klobuchar
Klobuchar

Wayne Messam

Mayor, Miramar, Fla.

Messam supports increasing foreign aid to Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, he told The Post.

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Wayne Messam
Messam

Seth Moulton

U.S. representative, Massachusetts

“I strongly support aid focused on solving the security crisis in these countries and protecting their most vulnerable populations,” Moulton told The Post. “Following lessons learned from Plan Columbia, we need to help these people find a safe, good life at home so they don’t have to flee to America in fear for their lives.”

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Seth Moulton
Moulton

Beto O'Rourke

Former U.S. representative, Texas

“We must focus on this hemisphere and once again make it a foreign policy priority of this country — we can either address the problems in Central America at our border or help the people of Central America address them at home,” O'Rourke's campaign website said.

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Beto O'Rourke
O'Rourke

Tim Ryan

U.S. representative, Ohio

“I strongly support increasing foreign aid to Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala to bolster humanitarian efforts as well as projects that can improve local economies and safety in these countries,” Ryan told The Post. “It’s critical that we are actively working to both improve conditions and reduce the desperation that leads many asylum seekers on the often-dangerous journey of seeking refuge in the United States.”

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Tim Ryan
Ryan

Bernie Sanders

U.S. senator, Vermont

“I believe our trade policies should be written with the goal of lifting standards of living both in the United States and abroad, and must protect workers in all countries, not large multinational corporations,” Sanders told The Post. “I support aid to Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala as well as strengthened diplomatic ties.” He signed onto a letter opposing President Trump's foreign aid cuts to Central American countries in April.

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Bernie Sanders
Sanders

Joe Sestak

Former U.S. representative, Pennsylvania

Sestak supports increasing foreign aid to Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, he told The Post.

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Joe Sestak
Sestak

Eric Swalwell (Dropped out)

U.S. representative, California

Swalwell is no longer running for president. “The issue of immigration needs leadership, not showmanship.,” Swalwell told The Post. “A leader would go beyond the border and convene leaders from Mexico and South American countries to support working with Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, as well as any relevant NGOs [nongovernmental organizations], to see how we can alleviate the suffering that is driving people to seek asylum in the U.S. If that requires increased foreign aid, then it’s an investment we should make."

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Eric Swalwell
Swalwell

Elizabeth Warren

U.S. senator, Massachusetts

“I’ll commit at least $1.5 billion annually in aid to fully fund programs that target crime, disrupt trafficking, address poverty, reduce sexual violence, and enhance programs for at-risk youth in Central America and throughout our hemisphere — and I’ll rally the international community to match those funds,” Warren's immigration plan said. She previously told The Post, “I believe we need to use all the tools in the toolbox — and that includes not cutting aid to countries in Central America and instead making sure we provide the support needed so mamas don’t have to flee with their babies for their lives.”

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Elizabeth Warren
Warren

Marianne Williamson

Author

“We need to address the reasons people are leaving their homes. We should help provide security and economic opportunity where they live so they don’t feel compelled to flee,” Williamson told The Post.

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Marianne Williamson
Williamson

Andrew Yang

Tech entrepreneur

“I absolutely think we should work with our neighbors in the Northern Triangle, through aid provided through U.S. agencies, to quell immigration,” Yang told The Post. “Improving the situation on the ground there will help decrease the number of asylum seekers.”

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Andrew Yang
Yang

Unclear/No response

Unclear/No response

Bill de Blasio

Mayor, New York City

De Blasio did not provide an answer to this question.

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Bill de Blasio
de Blasio

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Background A surge in unaccompanied minors and families from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala during Obama’s second term led to a significant increase in foreign aid to the region, peaking at $754 million in 2016. The goal was to strengthen civil society, including local and national police forces, and increasing economic opportunities to decrease migration. Since Trump took office, the funding has gradually decreased, with the White House requesting $436 million in fiscal 2019. At the end of March, Trump announced that he would be “ending” previously appropriated aid to the three countries because of another surge in migration from the region. “They haven’t done a thing for us,” he said.

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How candidate positions were compiled

The Washington Post sent a detailed questionnaire to every Democratic campaign asking whether it supports various changes to U.S. immigration and border security policy. Candidates with similar stances were organized into groups using a combination of those answers, legislative records, action taken in an executive role and other public comments, such as policy discussion on campaign websites, social media posts, interviews, town hall meetings and other news reports. See something we missed? Let us know.

We expect candidates to develop more detailed policy positions throughout the campaign, and this page will update as we learn more about their plans. We also will note if candidates change their position on an issue. At initial publication, this page included major candidates who had announced a run for president or an exploratory committee. The Post will contact additional candidates as they enter the race and include them here.

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