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Yazmin Juárez, whose toddler died after becoming sick at an ICE facility. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call

A Guatemalan migrant woman became emotional as she alleged to a congressional hearing Wednesday that her toddler daughter died soon after being released from a U.S. detention center because of "neglect and mistreatment," ABC video shows.

What she's saying: "We came to the United States, where I hoped to build a better and safer life for us," Yazmin Juárez told the House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties in Spanish, per CBS. "Instead, I watched my baby girl die slowly and painfully — just a few months before her second birthday."

Why it matters: The immigration crisis is becoming the defining 2020 election issue of the moment, Axios' Alexi McCammond notes. The testimony of Juárez provides a rare glimpse into the experiences of migrants inside detention centers.

The big picture: Juárez's daughter died of a viral lung infection weeks after being released from the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement in May 2018, said Juárez, who is suing the U.S. government over her daughter Mariee's death.

  • She told the committee they were held in CBP custody for 3 or 4 days, where it was "very cold" and they were kept in "a cage" and "forced to sleep on a concrete floor," per NBC.
  • Her testimony moved Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) to tears. The freshman lawmaker has visited immigration detention centers to highlight issues there.

The other side: The Trump administration has implemented a hardline policy on migrants at the southern border as it attempts to hold a surge of migrant children and families who've been crossing the border this year.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Dominion sends cease and desist letter to My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell

Photo: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

Dominion Voting Systems on Monday sent a cease and desist letter to My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell over his spread of misinformation related to the 2020 election.

Why it matters: Trump and several of his allies have pushed false conspiracy theories about the company, leading Dominion to take legal action. It's suing pro-Trump lawyer Sydney Powell for defamation and $1.3 billion in damages, and a Dominion employee has sued Trump himself, OANN and Newsmax.

Off the Rails

Episode 5: The secret CIA plan

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer, Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Zach Gibson/Getty Images

Beginning on election night 2020 and continuing through his final days in office, Donald Trump unraveled and dragged America with him, to the point that his followers sacked the U.S. Capitol with two weeks left in his term. This Axios series takes you inside the collapse of a president.

Episode 5: Trump vs. Gina — The president becomes increasingly rash and devises a plan to tamper with the nation's intelligence command.

In his final weeks in office, after losing the election to Joe Biden, President Donald Trump embarked on a vengeful exit strategy that included a hasty and ill-thought-out plan to jam up CIA Director Gina Haspel by firing her top deputy and replacing him with a protege of Republican Congressman Devin Nunes.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

  1. Health: CDC director defends agency's response to pandemic — CDC warns highly transmissible coronavirus variant could become dominant in U.S. in March.
  2. Politics: Empire State Building among hundreds to light up in Biden inauguration coronavirus tribute.
  3. Vaccine: Fauci: 100 million doses in 100 days is "absolutely" doable.
  4. Economy: Unemployment filings explode again.
  5. Tech: Kids' screen time sees a big increase.