(CNSNews.com) – In a video interview with The Washington Post on Wednesday, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas acknowledged that the unprecedented surge of undocumented migrants crossing the Southwest border is “straining the system.”
But in the next breath, Mayorkas also said the Biden administration is “managing” those encounters.
Mayorkas spoke on the same day President Biden said he intends to (finally) visit the overrun border next week, when he goes to Mexico for a meeting with other North American leaders.
“That’s my intention,” Biden said about going to the border. “We’re working out the details now.”
Mayorkas told the Washington Post on Wednesday:
“There’s no question that the number of encounters that we are experiencing at the border is straining our system. and this hearkens back to the question you previously posed, which is, we’re operating within a system that is fundamentally broken.
“No one disagrees with that. We just can’t seem to agree upon the solution, and a solution is long, long overdue.
“Within the broken immigration system that we are operating, we are managing the number of encounters, and we are prepared to address the end of Title 42. We’ve been preparing for this since well beyond last year.”
Responding to Mayorkas on Thursday morning, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said the Biden administration has “sabotaged” border security:
“They talk about it being broken,” Paxton said about the border:
“Yeah, it’s never been perfect. But we can see under the Trump administration, the numbers of illegal immigrants coming across the border and the amount of crime involved with that, whether it was drugs or human trafficking other things, was at a much lower level than it is now. It’s significantly worse.
“They’ve created this — they’ve done it on purpose. And the fact they want more money — until they can figure out how to do it the right way, I wouldn’t give them another dime until we know how they’re going to use that that money.
“Because for all we know, they’re just going to use this money to encourage more illegal immigration and more drug trafficking.”
U.S. Customs and Border Protection said it encountered 233,740 people crossing into the U.S. in November, the third highest monthly number on record, behind the 241,136 in May 2022 and the 235,785 in April 2022.
The chart below shows the steady increase in border-crossers, many of them asylum-seekers, since Biden took office in January 2021.
Those who request asylum — hundreds of thousands of them in the past two years — are fanned out into border communities and the U.S. interior, pending immigration hearings – if they show up for those eventual hearings.
The Biden Homeland Security Department has issued a “six-pillar plan” to prepare for the lifting of Title 42, the public health order, which is expected to result in even more migrants crossing daily into the United States.
But the plan, summarized below, does not appear to do much of anything to discourage mass arrivals:
— Pillar 1: Surging resources, including personnel, transportation, medical support, and facilities to support border operations.
— Pillar 2: Increasing CBP processing efficiency and moving with deliberate speed to mitigate potential overcrowding at Border Patrol stations and alleviate the burden on the
surrounding border communities.
— Pillar 3: Administering consequences for unlawful entry [those not claiming asylum], including removal, detention, and prosecution.
— Pillar 4: Bolstering the capacity of NGOs to receive noncitizens after they have been processed by CBP and are awaiting the results of their immigration removal proceedings.
— Pillar 5: Targeting and disrupting the transnational criminal organizations (TCOs) and smugglers…
— Pillar 6: Collaborating with international and federal partners to deter irregular migration…
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