During the early months of Joe Biden’s presidency, the number of people appearing at the Southern border is way up.
Though previous years have shown a spike in migrants making the journey to the U.S. during the early months of the year, this year’s numbers dwarf those of the Trump years. And to deal with the overwhelming influx, the Biden administration is letting greater numbers of people in, either to walk free or be held in U.S. detention for an indefinite time.
The Associated Press reports that this spike began around the 2020 election, with the number of border encounters per month rising to 74,000 in December and shooting to a 20-year high of over 172,000 encounters in March.
Of course, these rising numbers also represent the crossing by many more minors and children, many unaccompanied or traveling with people who are not family. Families and children traveling alone accounted for 40% of the encounters in March, a higher proportion than ever before. Almost 20,000 of the March encounters were with unaccompanied children.
Families and minors are less likely to be turned away and are too often being welcomed into the country in one way or another. The infamous two-decade-old minor holding facilities are fuller than ever, well over capacity during a pandemic.
But that’s not all: according to the Washington Examiner, the Biden administration will soon be releasing 400 migrant families per day into the U.S. with nothing more than orders to present themselves at an ICE office within 60 days. This is due to the administration’s failure to meet the surging numbers of people with a proper response. Federal detention facilities are completely overwhelmed.
Tens of millions of federal dollars are now being spent on hotels and flights for illegal immigrants across the border region, currently totaling around 1,200 hotel beds in Texas and Arizona.
Though Trump was pilloried by the news media throughout 2020 for allegedly failing in his coronavirus response, we are now seeing the inept Biden administration bungle both the immigration crisis and coronavirus response in one move. Now is a worse time than ever to let foreign nationals stream into the country or to pack them shoulder-to-shoulder in detention centers with a fraction of the COVID-19 precautions that Americans are subject to before even a short domestic flight.
Biden has opted to distance himself from the crisis several weeks ago by placing Vice President Harris in charge of the Southern border. She has not announced a visit to the border or any major solutions since taking this assignment.
With such a clear message of weakness, if not open welcoming, it is no wonder that immigrants are seeing this as a better time than ever to make their trip to the U.S. Without Trump’s public threats and effective policies to return the great majority back to Mexico, foreign migrants are emboldened and finding the opportunity they hope for.
Who can tell how long this surge will continue, and if it has even reached its peak? With no sign of any intention from the Biden administration to take a stand against it, the situation at the Southern border looks to be worsening by the day.