Biden Administration’s Post-Title 42 Border Plan: More of the Same
How today’s disaster will become tomorrow’s catastrophe.
Title 42 has allowed Border Patrol agents to deny entry to illegal border-crossers because of COVID-19 health concerns without having to conduct any kind of hearing first, even on an asylum claim. The Biden administration is still planning to lift the Title 42 entry restriction on May 23rd. However, that may be on hold for a while following a federal district judge’s issuance of a temporary restraining order on April 25th requiring the administration to keep Title 42 in place for now.
Alejandro N. Mayorkas, the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), admitted in an April 26th memo that when “the Title 42 public health Order is lifted, we anticipate migration levels will increase, as smugglers will seek to take advantage of and profit from vulnerable migrants.”
Not to worry, according to Secretary Mayorkas, who says that DHS has a new plan to deal with that.
The DHS Secretary’s April 26th memo is entitled “DHS Plan for Southwest Border Security and Preparedness,” which discusses various measures the Biden administration intends to implement once the Title 42 termination goes into effect.
Secretary Mayorkas uses benign sounding terms in his memo like “vulnerable migrants” and “noncitizens” to obscure who they really are – illegal immigrants.
News flash. Even with Title 42 in force, once President Joe Biden opened the border to a flood of illegal immigrants, the migration surge turned into a disaster, with smugglers making lots of money in the process.
If past is prologue, we can expect a total catastrophe if and when Title 42 is lifted.
Secretary Mayorkas put on a public show of confidence during congressional testimony he provided on April 27th, claiming that everything was under control at the border. This lie flies in the face of what Mayorkas was told in person earlier this year by frustrated Border Patrol agents, who felt overwhelmed by the historically high illegal immigrant surges at various border locations.
Secretary Mayorkas shamelessly told the members of the House Homeland Security Committee that “we have effectively managed an unprecedented number of noncitizens seeking to enter the United States and interdicted more drugs and disrupted more smuggling operations than ever before."
Secretary Mayorkas spread this glaring bit of disinformation on the same day he confirmed during his congressional testimony that DHS is setting up a new board with the Orwellian title "Disinformation Governance Board.” It will be directed by Nina Jankowicz, who demonstrated her leftwing bias when she dismissed the Hunter Biden laptop story as Russian disinformation. The DHS Disinformation Governance Board director also tweeted in January 2021 that “the ‘free speech vs. censorship’ framing is a false dichotomy.”
Talk about the fox guarding the hen house!
The sad truth is that the Biden administration turned a relatively stable border with Mexico that it inherited from the Trump administration into a complete disaster.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection reported nearly 210,000 encounters with migrants who entered the U.S. illegally during March 2022 alone, the highest number since March 2000. The Biden administration itself has estimated that the number of daily encounters could more than double to 18,000 once Title 42 is lifted.
As bad as these historically high numbers of illegal immigrants are, with worse numbers to come if Title 42 is lifted, they tell only part of the story.
The Biden administration’s reckless open border policies have created a humanitarian crisis, not to mention that they are jeopardizing national security.
“Forty-two people on the U.S. government’s terror watch list have been arrested attempting to enter the United States illegally since President Joe Biden took office,” the Washington Examiner reported, based on federal data that it had obtained.
“The 42 arrests do not include those who are on the terror watch list but evaded law enforcement at the border and made it into the country without being detected,” the Washington Examiner article added. “Large numbers of migrants successfully elude authorities — the Border Patrol is aware of instances in March in which 62,000 noncitizens were observed illegally entering the country, but agents were unable to apprehend them.”
The “got-aways,” as the elusive illegal immigrants are called, may not only include suspected terrorists. They may well also include murderers, pedophiles, rapists, drug dealers, and gang members who have successfully re-entered the country after previous deportations. The Biden administration has sent a strong signal that it does not really care. It has allowed illegal immigrants already in the country who have been convicted of serious crimes to remain in the United States upon their release from state custody, instead of detaining and removing them as federal law requires.
The humanitarian crisis that has exploded on President Biden’s watch is dire. Some immigrants have died in transit. Others have been beaten, kidnapped, robbed, and sexually exploited. Smugglers have dumped little children and left them alone in the desert to fend for themselves.
The Biden administration continues to turn a blind eye to all the human suffering that its reckless border policies have brought about. Instead, it ludicrously describes its policies as “humane” and “smart,” while dismantling the Trump administration’s law enforcement measures that worked in curbing the flow of illegal immigrants.
For example, the Biden administration tried to defend its position that calls for doing away with the Trump-era Remain-in-Mexico policy in an appeal before the Supreme Court. This policy has required would-be asylum seekers traveling by land from their home countries through Mexico to wait in Mexico pending their asylum hearings. The Biden administration would prefer to admit many of these illegal immigrants into the United States and release them. The illegal immigrants would then be allowed to remain in the country for years until their hearings are conducted, with little effective monitoring in the meantime. It would not be long before the pro-illegal immigrant advocates demand that they be given a path to citizenship.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki derided former President Donald Trump’s border wall construction, which she claimed, during her April 25th press briefing, “was never going to work or be effective.”
The border wall certainly would have helped stem the influx of illegal immigrants across the southern border if the Biden administration had not abandoned the border wall construction in midstream. This administration even refused to sell the leftover construction materials to the state of Texas, which had wanted to use those materials to continue building the wall itself.
President Biden would rather let the steel panels rust and waste taxpayers’ money already invested in starting to build the wall. His administration is wasting even more money by having to pay contractors fees associated with the project’s termination.
Psaki also tried to deflect any responsibility on the part of the Biden administration for the tragic drowning of Texas National Guard member Spc. Bishop E. Evans. He died while trying to save the lives of two illegal immigrants struggling to cross the Rio Grande, who turned out to be drug smugglers.
In one of her most callous statements as White House Press Secretary to date, Psaki said, “I would note that the National Guard worked for the states, and so he is an employee of the Tex- — Texas National Guard, and his efforts and his operation were directed by there, not by the federal government, in this — in this effort, in this apparatus.”
Maybe Psaki was rehearsing for a future gig at MSNBC. In any event, her crass cop-out does not stand up to even a cursory review of the Biden administration’s dismal record on immigration.
President Biden created the border crisis in the first place. Then his administration refused requests from Texas Governor Gregg Abbot for additional federal assistance to cope with the crossing of thousands of illegal immigrants into Texas from Mexico, which has imposed heavy burdens on border communities. Governor Abbot felt that he had no alternative but to enlist the assistance of the Texas National Guard, which included Spc. Bishop E. Evans.
The Biden administration needs to take at least some responsibility for the loss of life from border crossings since President Biden took office, including the death of Spc. Evans.
After all the chaos surrounding the Biden administration’s handling of illegal immigration even while Title 42 has remained in effect, DHS Secretary Mayorkas now expects Americans to trust that the Biden administration has a workable post-Title 42 plan. It is little more than old wine in new bottles.
Promising to add more border agents on the ground, for example, will not deter more caravans of immigrants from crossing the border illegally if these agents, like those already at the border, are prevented from fully enforcing the nation’s immigration laws.
In the absence of quick deportations and adequate detention facilities, the DHS’s plan to move personnel from other federal government agencies to perform “migrant processing” duties at the border will simply facilitate the paperwork for more catch-and-release. With no more Title 42 to worry about and catch-and-release in full swing, many thousands of immigrants will most likely journey to the United States and use an asylum claim as an excuse to enter the country illegally.
Secretary Mayorkas’s memo lauds non-governmental organizations (NGOs) as “partners who play a critical role in helping noncitizens who are released from DHS custody for the pendency of their removal proceedings.”
In fact, part of the DHS’s new plan is devoted to “bolstering NGO capacity.” The reason is simple. The NGOs will take the illegal immigrants off DHS’s hands and arrange for them to be covertly transported to destinations across the country.
As Secretary Mayorkas’s memo puts it: “NGOs play a critical role in providing care and support with onward travel to noncitizens who are entered into immigration removal proceedings, not subject to detention, and released from CBP [U.S. Customs and Border Protection] custody.”
In plain English, expect more and more planeloads and busloads of such “noncitizens” arriving under the cover of darkness at airports and bus stops across the United States with the helping hands of NGOs.
Secretary Mayorkas promises to target and disrupt the transnational criminal organizations and smugglers engaged in human and drug trafficking into the United States. But the Biden administration’s record to date has been a colossal failure.
Despite the seizures of substantial amounts of fentanyl at the U.S.-Mexico border, for example, smugglers have still managed to flood fentanyl across the border on President Biden’s watch, leading to an overdose epidemic that has killed thousands of Americans.
All that we get from the Biden administration are hollow assurances that everything will be copacetic. But as Albert Einstein once said, "We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them."