Biden news – live: President quadruples refugee cap as adviser suggests he ‘wears mask outside out of habit’

Joe Biden enters House chamber for joint session of Congress

Joe Biden has quadrupled the US’ refugee cap after facing a bipartisan backlash for being slow to increase the low number set by the Trump administration.

The president formally confirmed the decision to raise the bar from 15,000 to 62,500 refugee admissions per year, three months after he submitted a proposal to Congress on the issue.

“It is important to take this action today to remove any lingering doubt in the minds of refugees around the world who have suffered so much, and who are anxiously waiting for their new lives to begin,” Mr Biden said.

He added that the limit introduced by his predecessor “did not reflect America’s values as a nation that welcomes and supports refugees”.

Meanwhile, one of the president’s advisers told CNN that he was still wearing a mask outside out of habit, although it is no longer required under Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance.

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Biden quadruples refugee cap

Joe Biden has quadrupled the US’ refugee cap to 62,500 this year, saying the low ceiling set by Donald Trump “did not reflect America’s values as a nation that welcomes and supports refugees”.

The president described the move as an important way of showing “America’s commitment to protect the most vulnerable, and to stand as a beacon of liberty and refuge to the world.”

Rory Sullivan4 May 2021 07:58

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Morning, and welcome to The Independent’s rolling US politics coverage.

Rory Sullivan4 May 2021 07:53

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