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Washington D.C. – House Foreign Affairs Lead Republican Michael McCaul (R-TX) released the following statement after voting in favor of H.R. 549, the Venezuela TPS Act, designating Venezuelan nationals as eligible for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) in the United States:

Lead Republican McCaul: We are witnessing an unprecedented humanitarian and refugee crisis that threatens to destabilize South and Central America. Nicolas Maduro’s socialist policies and systemic corruption have plummeted the once prosperous Venezuela to a nation plagued by economic collapse and immense human suffering. I saw firsthand the conditions on the ground in Colombia, where 1.3 million refugees have poured out of Venezuela to escape the Maduro regime’s brutality. While on the Colombia-Venezuela border, I spoke to courageous Venezuelans, including many families with children, who recounted the persecution and lack of food and medicine. It is one of the most awful man-made disasters I have encountered in my lifetime.

“These Venezuelans are true refugees fleeing from a socialist dictatorship and should be protected from being returned to harm, which is what TPS was designed to do in the first place. We will continue to work with our partners in the region who are also helping Venezuelan refugees directly impacted by this crisis. The American people maintain their support for freedom-loving Venezuelans and will continue to do so until democracy is restored and they can return to rebuild a brighter future for themselves without fear from the Maduro regime’s depravity.”

Background: Earlier this year,  Lead Republican McCaul traveled to the Colombia-Venezuela border to assess the humanitarian crisis in Venezuela and its effect on neighboring countries in the region. McCaul has been actively involved in addressing the ongoing crisis in Venezuela and continues to work with the Administration and his colleagues in Congress on finding solutions.