Biden's border policies are well on their way to allowing between 300k to 500k illegal alien crossings per month starting in June, according to Todd Bensman with the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS). Those numbers amount to a potential 6 million illegals crossing the border yearly if the administration continues on its current path.
There are several key contributing decisions that could make those unprecedented numbers a reality. For starters, yesterday, there were reports that the Biden administration is preparing to rescind former President Trump's Title 42 order in May. President Biden also plans to shorten ICE detention, which is costly and poses real threats to national security.
Additionally, a little known but critical rule change basically "rubber stamps" Asylum grants which will effectively "hid[e] the border disaster" by turning 'illegal aliens' into 'asylum seekers,'" according to CIS policy wonks, Andrew R. Arthur and Robert Law.
Title 42 was put in place in March of 2020 by the Trump administration in the "interest of public health" due to the pandemic. Title 42 removal status is articulated in the Public Health Service Act of 1944. Halting Title 42 alone could portend a massive influx of illegal immigrants. It should be noted that infectious diseases continue to pose a material threat at the border entirely separate from the advent of COVID.
In a March 2019 column for CIS, Arthur wrote about the costs and dangers posed by "foreign nationals" crossing the border with infectious diseases. In 2018 in one sector alone, the Yuma Sector "incurred more than $700,000 in medical care costs to cover 1,700 aliens who were apprehended and who had to be transported to the hospital. Other aliens show up sick, particularly children, some of whom are suffering from illnesses not generally seen in modern American society, including mumps, measles, and tuberculosis, as well as others with influenza, scabies, and other skin diseases. Plainly, the Border Patrol cannot turn these individuals away without treatment."
DHS is allegedly "bracing itself for as many as 500k illegals in the six weeks following" the lifting of Title 42. An influx like that will put tremendous pressure on personnel. There are not enough federal agents and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) to process the illegals at the border.
Vaughn also reports that the administration is "looking at doing NTAs (Notice To Appear) with "minimal biometric data and vetting" to expedite processing. She also says that the Biden administration is also considering using an app called CBP1 to allow illegal immigrants to use for "pre-screening." The CBP1 App is generally reserved for known travelers to cross the border easily. It is now being thought of as an easy way to cross the border.
ICE Detention Cuts And Politicized Data
Biden is also making moves to cut ICE detention. A March 29 article from CIS explains:
"President Biden wants to cut ICE detention by more than a quarter—from the current level of 34,000 beds to just 25,000—for FY 2023. It's the latest step in the administration's plan to dismantle immigration enforcement and demolish the limits Congress has placed on immigration."
The administration knows the influx of illegals is at record levels. Often the detention facilities are reserved for convicted criminals coming across the border. However, instead of detaining said criminals, the Biden administration is "working to drive down the average length of stay for convicted criminals in ICE's detention facilities," according to the 262-page U.S. Immigration And Customs Enforcement proposal submitted to Congress by the DHS for the fiscal year 2022. Effectively, says Jon Feere, who wrote a story on the topic for the Federalist, "The Biden administration is cooking the books on illegal immigrant arrests," with the potential to cause a significant security threat in the U.S.
Feere exposes that the Biden administration has yet to publish its 2021 version of "the detailed immigration enforcement-focused report called the 'ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations Report' that the agency has published by the end of every calendar year for at least the last decade." The 2020 report can be found here.
Feere also points out that the definition for crimes that rise to the level of detention has been changed under the current administration, causing "politicized data" that fails to reflect what is happening with detentions and deportations accurately. In fact, according to Feere, it has become a scandal with ICE officers now "leaking critical data" that was not publicly reported because of the missing operations report.
Citing a Washington Times story, Feere quotes unpublished data that shows a failure on the part of the administration to arrest and/or remove significantly fewer numbers of criminal aliens as compared with 2020:
Washington Times/March 16, 2022
Graphic/The Washington Times/Ice Numbers/March 16, 2022
According to the story, one ICE agency person said, "That's not good data. It's not reliable. I can tell you definitively there were more aggravated felony arrests in 2020. Another ICE source called the arrest data 'a shell game with numbers'."
In addition, ICE officers, according to the Washington Times, were pushed to ignore information "to avoid making arrests."
Washington Times/March 16, 2022
Feere contends that this administration is hiding "the fact that the number of serious criminal aliens it is pursuing for removal (for crimes like murder, robbery, kidnapping, and sexual assaults) have dropped." Instead of detention, says Feere, Biden is pursuing more costly policies. The President "is shifting from incarcerating undocumented immigrants to using ankle-monitoring devices and other alternatives." Those "alternatives to detention (ATD)" are more costly than detention, however, and do nothing to ensure that aliens show up for court or for removal."
ATD is more costly than detention, says Feere. "Detention is $6080 per alien on average, and ATD is $9167 and likely to climb." For one thing, "aliens released on ATD are placed on the immigration courts' non-detained dockets, meaning that their cases will go on much, much longer, increasing the costs of ATD," he continues.
Biden's Proposed Rule Change Will "Rubber Stamp" Asylum Grants
The Biden administration posted a proposed Rule by the Homeland Security Department and the Executive Office for Immigration Review on 08/20/2021. According to Todd Bensman with CIS, the rule has passed after receiving thousands of comments. The rule will effectively rubber stamp asylum grants and go into effect right around the time of the Title 42 recission. On Thursday, Bensman told Steve Bannon on the War Room that 18,000 illegals a day are projected to cross the border, amounting to 540k a month if those numbers hold. "Those 18,000 people can potentially be stamped for asylum right away and be resettled" in the country. "We are on track for 6 million people—the size of a city like Los Angeles," said Bensman.
"This is very important, this rule. Where the administration has given authority, they've cut out immigration judges from asylum. They are now going to give the authority to grant asylum to regular field officers who meet these immigrants and just rubberstamp asylum—you're in. It just passed and takes effect in 60 days unless somebody sues in Texas.
It removes judges and it removes adversarial ICE lawyers from the process so that if one of these migrants gets approved, there's nobody in the government to appeal it. We don't believe that person deserves asylum? They get in (anyway). If they get disapproved, then the migrant has multiple layers of appeals for years and years, and so this is their idea for how to manage the border. No longer do they have to give out NTRs (Notice to Report) or NTAs under this plan. They get asylum on the spot. No judges."
Arthur writes about the rule change, saying the Justice Department and DHS justify the rule change to make "asylum more efficient and fair." CIS submitted a response to the rule change in October, writing that "this proposal violates the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), the Homeland Security Act of 2002, and several other provisions of law. Not to mention that the NPRM is bad policy even if it were legal."
It is a "significant procedural change" that would "remove several crucial safeguards put in place to ensure that asylum grants are not subject to fraud and abuse." Arthur explains:
"Here's why: Under law prior to this most recent announcement, only IJs could grant asylum to aliens apprehended at the border who were then placed into 'expedited removal' proceedings, and then only at the end of formal removal proceedings.
In those proceedings, the alien respondent was allowed to present evidence (including testimony) concerning his or her asylum claim. During that presentation of evidence, an ICE attorney representing the interests of the American people was allowed to cross-examine and impeach the alien respondent, offer contradictory evidence, and appeal an erroneous asylum grant.
Under the administration's new rule (formally known as an "interim final rule" or IFR), those procedural safeguards are thrown out the window. The AO elicits the alien's claim during a 'non-adversarial' interview during which the alien is allowed to have an attorney (but you, the American people, aren't). If the AO grants asylum, even contrary to law, logic, and the weight of the evidence, that's it. There is no ICE lawyer to appeal that decision.
Advocates of this proposal will point to the purported 'AO supervisory review' of the AO's decision as the equivalent of an ICE appeal. Don't believe it. Overworked supervisors will bless the vast majority of AO grants simply to keep the train on the tracks."
Arthur then explains the difference between AO and IJ. One is a "bureaucrat," and the other is an "independent adjudicator" who knows how to interpret the law.
"Why do we refer to this as 'rubberstamping'?
For the simple reason that the Biden administration can now impose its 'vision' of what asylum should be merely by publishing 'guidance' telling the AOs how they should rule in various scenarios. No disrespect intended, but AOs are bureaucrats, not that different in this asylum process from the DMV clerk who is deciding whether to issue you a new REAL ID-compliant driver's license or not.
IJs, on the other hand, and regardless of what you may hear, are 'independent' adjudicators who can ignore such directives when interpreting the law. And again, if they get it wrong (and they sometimes do), the appellate process is there to (more or less) ensure that the result comports with congressional intent."
Illegal Immigration: Terrorist Crossings And "Ant Operations"
Immigration policy is highly complex, and weak policies can profoundly affect the safety and security of a nation. Many factors affect the numbers crossing America's borders. Biden has altered the Trump-era Remain in Mexico policy, also known as Migrant Protection Protocols or MPP, beyond recognition of its former self. The Biden administration attempted to halt the program altogether but was stymied by the courts, who said it had not been "ended properly."
Bensman, a border policy expert, maintains that Biden's policies are causing historic numbers of illegal crossings and 'unprecedented strains" at the southern border. The dangers are real.
For example, he reports the "foreign national who pinged on a terror watch list" who was "released on his own recognizance into the American interior." This is one of many instances of foreign nationals on the terror watchlist who gain access to the U.S. through illegal crossings.
Other countries' policies and rules also affect our borders profoundly. Just after Christmas, writes Bensman, Mexico initiated a "crafty ruse to send hundreds of thousands of migrants to the America border in the coming year without raising any alarms." The clandestine movements are called "ant operations—an informal tactic by which immigrant smugglers move large volumes of people in small distributed parties and individuals in many single file lines so that most evade notice of authorities."
Bensman continued, "Mexico did this with the QR code visa, which is an honor-system scheme that asks recipients to voluntarily report to a Mexican immigration office in a particular city by a specified date, ostensibly to apply for and await a more permanent Mexican residency card, copies of the visas show. With this tactic, the government ensured that no huge caravan or Del Rio migrant camp could form that would draw media attention and cause political damage to either the Mexican or American government, or open diplomatic rifts."
Bensman says the way to stop the bleeding at the border starts with "awareness." It is "critical, pivotal that people take the reporting that has been done" by CIS and others. People must "go to their congresspeople and to organizations that have the capability to litigate. The American people must understand what's in store here. If they do this (rule change), it is going to facilitate and entice the rest of the world to come here. They are already enticed, but this thing is really going to change the game."