Ted Cruz announces legislation to keep illegal immigrant families together. Here’s what the bill does.

DCNFMolly Prince, DCNF

(JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)

Republican Sen. Ted Cruz announced on Monday that he will introduce emergency legislation aimed at stopping family separations along the U.S. border.

The Protect Kids and Parents Act, which will be introduced by Cruz later in the week, requires that illegal immigrant families stay together barring any “aggravated criminal conduct or threat of harm to the children,” according to the press release.

It would also require new temporary shelters, doubles the number of federal immigration judges, and mandates that asylum cases to be adjudicated within 14 days.

“Children belong with their mothers and fathers,” Cruz added. “Once their cases have been adjudicated – under my legislation, in no longer than 14 days – those who meet the legal standard should be granted asylum and those who don’t should be immediately returned home to their country.”

The legislation comes as the White House is facing backlash over border policies which separate children from their parents when families cross the border illegally. Cruz’s legislation is an alternative to legislation proposed by Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein, reports The Washington Times. Feinstein’s bill would also end separating illegal immigrant families, however, it would not give government more power to detain illegal immigrants and it does not necessitate expedited court settlements.

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