With an estimated 170,000 refugees who have been turned away at the southern U.S. border poised to try again, the Biden administration plans to end the Trump policy that allowed Border Patrol agents to expel asylum seekers due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The policy, known as Title 42, will end May 23 amid acknowledgement by the White House that it will result in an “influx” of illegal border crossers, Reuters reported.
President Biden has been under pressure from his far-left base to eliminate the law, which was implemented by former President Trump and continued and upheld in court during the Biden administration.
The policy allows border agents to deny entry without considering asylum claims to anyone from a country where a communicable disease such as COVID-19 is rampant. So far, it has been used to turn away more than 1 million asylum seekers.
Intelligence officials have told the news site Axios that as many as 170,000 people are waiting to apply for asylum. Earlier this month, Buzzfeed reported a DHS draft document warned that the prepandemic practice of processing immigrants who cross the border illegally through the normal asylum process would “seriously strain” border resources, leading to a humanitarian crisis.
DHS officials expressed concern in the document about “historically and unseasonably high” numbers of immigrants crossing the border without authorization.
A former Trump administration immigration official, John Zadrozny, said in a podcast interview that the U.S. had the border under control until Joe Biden immediately halted construction of the wall, changed asylum policies and allowed illegal aliens to disappear into the country.
Zadrozny, who was interviewed by former Wall Street CEO Bill Walton, served as deputy assistant to the president and acting chief of staff at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services during the Trump administration.
See Zadrozny’s remarks:
We had the border under control until Joe Biden immediately halted construction of the wall, changed asylum policies and is now allowing illegal aliens to disappear into our country, says Homeland Security/Immigration expert John Zadronzy. @JohnZadronzy @FredFleitz pic.twitter.com/585mGJebiH
— Bill Walton (@billwaltonshow) March 30, 2022
Reporting Wednesday from the border for “War Room Pandemic,” Ben Bergquam said, based on his interviews with migrants in Mexico, that the lifting of Title 42 creates “an invitation for the world to come.”
He anticipates that in the weeks leading up to May 23 there will be a “massive wave of people coming to the southern border and just waiting for that date.”
He cited Sheriff Joe Frank Martinez of Eagle Pass, Texas, a Democrat, saying it’s not going to be a crisis, it’s going to be a “disaster.”
Bergquam noted that many migrants have died in their effort to reach the U.S., and he expects that with the lifting of Title 42 there will be many more deaths.
“We’re going to see more drownings, more dead people out in the desert, people that are trying to get across because they know the invitation is ripe,” he said.
‘A massive crash trajectory’
A multi-agency unit from the Departments of State, Justice, Defense and Health and Human Services has been formed to handle the anticipated influx, Axios reported.
The “Southwest Border Mass Irregular Migration Contingency Plan” could include flying migrants to less-congested border crossings, deploying buses from the Bureau of Prisons and setting up large tent bases.
An ICE officer said agency employees who work inland have received a memo informing them that they could be deployed to the border.
“We are on a massive crash trajectory for the system,” the officer told the Washington Times.
DHS officials said Tuesday they could be handling more than 500,000 asylum seekers each month.
In the first of a four-part miniseries on the border crisis by the Republican National Committee, Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, charged Democrats are “turning a blind eye” to the problem.
“We are seeing a human rights catastrophe, we are seeing a public health catastrophe, we are seeing a crime and national security catastrophe,” Cruz said.
Cruz said he has asked Senate Democrats to come to the border and see for themselves, but “not one of them is willing to do it.”
“They’re literally turning a blind eye, and they’re counting on the corporate media to cover it up,” the senator said.
Also in the RNC video is an interview with Rep. Tony Gonzalez, R-Texas, who argued the crisis harms migrants as well as Americans.
“These are people. These are real people there, right? So the migrants that are jumping off of trains and getting hurt – in some cases losing arms and limbs, that’s part of the 2 million,” he said.
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