Biden Administration Lays Out Plan to “Manage” New Surge of Illegal Immigration After Cancelation of Title 42
(Editor’s note: This edition of the FAIR newsletter was completed before the official cancelation of Title 42 on May 11. Title 42 is a public health provision that allows for the rapid expulsion of illegal migrants during a public health emergency that was invoked at the onset of the COVID pandemic.)
For months, the Biden administration has been pressed by members of Congress to present a plan to deal with the surge of illegal immigration expected after the formal end of Title 42 on May 11. Two weeks before it ended, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) finally rolled out a ‘plan’ that amounts to the same failed policies that resulted in record levels of illegal immigration, only on steroids. DHS’s own estimates indicated that as many as 18,000 migrants a day – 540,000 per month – could attempt to enter the U.S. illegally once the policy was terminated.
As the rollout of the plan, “U.S. Government Announces Sweeping New Actions to Manage Regional Migration,” suggests, the Administration was not even making a pretense that the goal is to prevent or deter even larger numbers of migrants from entering the country. Rather, it is a massive scheme to process migrants and disburse them around the country as quickly as possible.
The effort to ‘manage’ even greater levels of illegal migration further abuses parole authority to admit people who do not have visas and creates new regional processing centers that serve as assembly lines to move people into the United States.
DHS’s plan claims that migrants who cross the border illegally will be subject to expedited removal, but that is a hollow threat that is designed to convince the American public that they are attempting to enforce immigration laws, which they have adamantly refused to do since the day President Biden took office. In reality, it is an open invitation to foreign nationals to make specious claims for asylum, under which they will be allowed to enter the United States while they wait as long as ten years for a hearing on their cases.
The plan also includes expanded abuse of presidential parole authority to admit people from a growing number of countries who have family members in the United States. Parole is not a lawful pathway for immigrants. The authority to parole foreign nationals who do not have, or do not qualify for a visa, is very limited. The statute explicitly states that it be exercised on a “case-by-case basis” based on some compelling humanitarian or national interest. In addition, it only allows temporary entry and the parolee must depart once the reasons for them being here no longer exist. None of these conditions can possibly be met under the administration’s plan to grant parole to tens of thousands of foreign nationals every month.
Additionally, the administration is planning to double the number of Western Hemisphere migrants who are admitted as refugees, despite the fact that the overwhelming majority are economic migrants. The plan calls for establishing additional “Regional Processing Centers (RPCs) in key locations throughout the Western Hemisphere to reduce irregular migration and facilitate safe, orderly, humane, and lawful pathways from the Americas.” The goal of the RPCs is to process migrants as quickly as possible and move them into the United States, rather than having them cross the border illegally – which looks bad, as the president is now formally seeking reelection. Based on the Biden administration’s track record, very few migrants will be denied entry.
The DHS plan reinforces the urgency of passing the Border Security and Immigration Enforcement Act of 2023, H.R. 2640, that was approved by the House Judiciary Committee in April. That legislation would make it more difficult to abuse our asylum process; bar this and future administrations from releasing inadmissible migrants into the United States; and end presidential abuse of parole authority.