The Biden Administration announced on April 1 that a COVID-era policy that sent at least fifty percent of undocumented immigrants back to their home country would cease by May 23rd. This policy, known as Title 42, was put into place by the Trump Administration at the height of the pandemic. With numbers tumbling, the White House said the policy should come to an end.
However, not only is the Biden Administration facing criticism from Republican lawmakers on its southern border policies, but many Democrats are also putting pressure on the White House to rescind the decision to end Title 42.
White House officials along with the president are calling for a “fix for the broken immigration system” as it stands; however, critics of the Title 42 decision believe that Biden’s border policies are not only broken, but they are dangerous to American citizens across the country.
Both Democrats and Republicans believe that the end of Title 42 will lead to an “overwhelming” number of migrant encounters at the southern border.
When questioned about the ending of Title 42, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said that Title 42 was never “an immigration authority” nor “an immigration plan.” Psaki also described the current immigration system as “broken.” She even stated that there was “more to do.”
When Biden announced the end of Title 42, he stated that there is nothing in place to keep the expelled immigrants from trying time and again to cross the border once more. However, opponents of the decision say that his announcement might as well have been an open invitation to come across the border.
Earlier this week, it was reported that at least 23 suspected or known terrorists (their names were on the TSDB database) had attempted to cross the border. On Tuesday, data shows that over 40 individuals who are listed on the terror watchlist have attempted to come across the southern border.
In March, there were 14,000 unaccompanied minors who crossed the southern border.
Facing criticism from his own party, Joe Biden has said that he wants a plan for “expeditiously removing” those migrants who “do not qualify to remain in the United States.” A Biden Administration official said to Fox News that individuals “who crossed the border without legal authorization will be promptly placed into removal proceedings” and, if unable to provide a legal reason why they should be allowed into the country, “will be removed to their country of origin.”
At the same time, the border is overrun with migrants. Texas Governor Greg Abbott has bused seven loads of migrants to Washington, DC within the last two weeks.
The issue that most Americans have with placing these individuals in “removal proceedings” is that once they are inside the United States, they often do not report to court proceedings. This is why individuals like Tom Homan, former director of ICE, says that the “Remain in Mexico” policy worked so well during the Trump Administration. While individuals were apprehended and placed in the court system, they had to physically remain on the Mexico side of the southern border.
As it stands, with no physical barriers and a diminishing border patrol, individuals from the world over are coming into America via the southwestern border of the United States. There have been reports in the last few weeks that migrants are being given smartphones in order for the individual to be tracked. However, some are aware of the purpose of the phone, and they simply throw it away.
Many Democratic lawmakers, including Mark Kelly (D-AZ), are saying that there is no plan to improve the broken immigration system. Even New Hampshire’s Maggie Hasan, a Democrat, has been to the southern border. This is something the president has never done, even as a senator. Vice President Kamala Harris visited El Paso, but has not been to the Del Rio or Rio Grande sectors of the border.
This issue could prove to be detrimental to Democrats across the nation in November mid-term elections.