Number of migrants in southern border fell sharply in June in the first full month after the end of the Title 42 public health order and as the Biden administration implemented its post-Title 42 strategy – bringing the numbers to a two-time low years.
There were 144,571 migrant encounters in June, compared to 207,834 in June last year and 189,034 in June 2021. In June 2020, there were only 33,049 at the border.
While the numbers are still high historically (the June numbers are still higher than any month in the 2019 border crisis), they mark a sharp drop from the 206,702 seen in May and 211,999 in April – while many experts and commentators expected an increase in migrant apprehensions. when Title 42 ended on May 11.
But the end of the public health order, which allowed for the rapid deportation of migrants at the border, was accompanied by a carrot-and-stick approach by the Biden administration, which combined increased border measures with greatly expanded parole programs for migrants in the tens of thousands.
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The cornerstone of DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas’ post-Title 42 strategy was an asylum rule that makes migrants ineligible for asylum if they entered the United States illegally and did not seek asylum. asylum in other countries through which they have passed. It has also stepped up the use of expedited removal and “credible fear” screenings.
Related to this is the requirement that those entering the United States at the border make an appointment through the controversial CBP One app. Initially, there were 1,000 parole appointments a day for migrants in the United States, but that number has since skyrocketed to 1,450 per day.
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Meanwhile, other programs are opening up pathways without migrants having to travel to the border. One allows 30,000 nationals from Cuba, Haiti, Venezuela and Nicaragua to travel directly to the United States per month, while the United States has also set up processing centers across the Central America and have recently expanded a family reunification program for relatives of citizens and permanent residents of certain countries.
The strategy has drawn criticism from both right and left, with left-wing groups challenging the asylum rule in court, arguing that it unlawfully limits foreign nationals’ right to seek asylum. Meanwhile, conservative states have accused the administration to abuse the parole system to allow migrants in by the tens of thousands, noting that Congress says the power must be used on a “case-by-case” basis for pressing humanitarian reasons or an important public interest. Separately, a May policy that allowed the release of migrants to the United States due to overcrowding was blocked in May after a Florida lawsuit.
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The Biden administration says the new numbers show its strategy is working. He pointed to figures showing there had been 99,545 encounters of illegal migrants by Border Patrol – a 42 per cent decrease from May.
“Our sustained efforts to enforce the consequences under our longstanding Title 8 authorities, combined with expanding access to legal pathways and processes, have driven the number of migrant encounters along the Southwest border. to their lowest level in more than two years. We will remain vigilant,” said CBP Acting Commissioner Troy Miller.
But former acting director of immigration and customs Thomas Homan pushed back, noting that the numbers remain “well above the Trump administration” and that the Biden administration “continues to perform poorly against to 2019-2020”.
“About 4,000 a day is nowhere near a win. When Mayorkas was undersecretary under (Obama-era secretary) Jeh Johnson, we were all called out if there were more than 1,000 a day. day,” said Homan, a visiting scholar at the Heritage Foundation. said. “If you look at what those ‘low’ numbers really mean, part of it is because they’ve illegally paroled over half a million in the country in about two years. Compare that number at any point in our time Violating parole authority to illegally allow illegal aliens into the United States at historic numbers, all as part of an effort to knowingly misrepresent the border crisis, is disgusting.
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Meanwhile, some Republican states have taken matters into their own hands to deal with the crisis. Earlier this month, Governor Greg Abbott announced the deployment of a new water barrier to prevent illegal migrants from entering the state, while Texas and Florida implemented programs to transport migrants to “sanctuary” jurisdictions.