Why did we vote for Trump? To control the border, right? Let's face it. Trump has failed to do that.
From the Washington Times:
Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan said Thursday [May 23] that “100%” of illegal-immigrant families in the new border surge are being released into communities, rather than being held and deported.
'100%' of illegal immigrant families being released into U.S., Homeland Security says, by Stephen Dinan, Washington Times, May 23, 2019
Let that sink in a moment. Under Donald Trump, Tweeter-in-Chief who pledged to control the border, 100% of illegal immigrant families are being released on U.S. soil. How can we see that as anything but a failure?
[McAleenan] said within a month or two, they are also granted work permits, giving them a foothold to live and remain in the U.S. while their cases proceed through the immigration courts — a process that averages two years, and stretches even longer in some overwhelmed regions. Mr. McAleenan said that system, rewarding unauthorized migrants who jump the border with exactly the thing they seek, is responsible for the record-breaking numbers.
“That is directly how smugglers are advertising,” [McAleenan] told the Senate Homeland Security Committee, adding that it applies not just to families seeking asylum.
The smugglers, being professionals, are very well-informed on U.S. border policy.
The effects on the border have been stunning.
How would they not be?
In 2012, only about 10,000 migrants traveling as families — meaning parent and child — were caught by Border Patrol at the border. Over the last two months alone, that number was 111,679 people.
Just a reminder—in 2012 Obama was president.
Many of the families end up ignoring their immigration court proceedings, and remain in the U.S. illegally even after they have been ordered deported.
Wow, what a shocker! They may never leave. No wonder Latin Americans no longer fear Trump.
That was brought into stark view this week when U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement revealed that an illegal immigrant teen affiliated with the violent international MS-13 street gang came into the U.S. as part of a family unit in 2015. Josue Fuentes-Ponce and his family did not show up for their immigration hearing in 2017 and they were ordered deported in absentia — yet nobody ever went to look for the family.
Yeah, we've really got a government that's looking out for us, don't we?
The teen remained free in Maryland, where he was accused last year of attempted murder. ICE sought to deport him, but he was released from custody after local authorities did not honor a detainer request. He now stands accused of the horrific murder of a 14-year-old girl in Maryland last month. Prosecutors say he and another illegal immigrant, 17-year-old Joel Ernesto Escobar, who arrived in the U.S. as an Unaccompanied Alien Child, used a bat to bash the girl and a machete to chop at her, suspecting she was going to rat them out over a gang-related robbery.
Our leaders, of both parties, really ought to be held accountable for this sort of thing. But don't hold your breath.
Numbers USA ran an article the next day reporting on the McAleenan testimony, which said that
Under an ICE memo signed by former ICE Director John Morton in 2009, and still in effect today, any family unit that is found to have a credible fear if returned to their home country can be given parole, which entitles them to a work permit.
McAleenan's statements indicate that the policy of 'catch-and-release', a policy that Pres. Trump pledged to end, is in full effect. Limited detention space, and further cuts to detention space and enforcement efforts by Congress in the last DHS spending bill, along with a massive border surge, have somewhat hampered Pres. Trump's ability to end catch-and-release. However, the Administration's inability to end certain policies that are contributing to the ongoing surge are also to blame.
Acting DHS Chief Says All Illegal Border Crossers Being Released, Numbers USA, May 24, 2019 (That title says "All Illegal Border Crossers" but according to the Washington Times article it's all illegal border crossers traveling in families.)
I know that Trump is under a lot of pressure, but if he can't get control of the border, he has failed in his principal campaign promise. Period.
There are measures he can take to deal with the problem. Besides tweeting, I mean. For starters, get Kris Kobach up there in Washington.
To their credit, a group of GOP congressmen has some suggestions:
A group of House Republicans wrote acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan to criticize DHS' failure to adopt border security fixes that are available without additional congressional action. They noted the president has shown leadership on the issue but DHS lacks “the same manner of enthusiasm for fixing this crisis.” The group -- Republican Reps. Michael Cloud (Tex.), Andy Biggs (Ariz.), Chip Roy (Tex.), Scott Perry (Penn.), Jody Hice (Ga.), Mark Green (Tenn.), Paul Gosar (Ariz.), Ken Buck (Colo.), Brian Babin (Tex.) and Jim Jordan (Ohio) – told McAleenan to “support the president” in his quest to secure the border.
House Republicans: DHS Failed to Implement Available Border Fixes, Numbers USA, May 24, 2019
Good for them. But the failures of DHS don't exonerate Trump, who, after all, is in charge of the department.
The letter said, “Recent DHS statistics on the number of arrivals at our southern border are clear proof that what is currently being done, is not enough…, "(A)s of March 31, 2019, 361,087 migrants have been apprehended between the points of entry (POEs) in Fiscal Year (FY) 2019, representing a 108 percent increase over the same time in FY 2018. Current projections are that more than 1 million people will have crossed our southern border illegally this year. Our constituents, the American public, are confounded as to why more is not being done by your Department…As the President continues to show leadership on this issue, we strongly encourage you to exercise the same manner of enthusiasm for fixing this crisis…Included in this letter are proposals that would undoubtedly slow the surge at the border and provide context for long term immigration solutions.”
Here are their suggestions for DHS:
- Train Border Patrol Agents to conduct credible fear interviews;
- Repeal the ICE parole policy established under the Obama Administration, which provides that most asylum seekers must be released and given a work authorization;
- Provide work authorizations only after an asylum application has been approved;
- Raise asylum fees;
- Promulgate regulation to terminate the Flores settlement;
- Negotiate “Safe Third Country” agreement with Mexico, which would require Central American migrants to seek asylum in Mexico, not the U.S.; and
- Fully implement “Remain in Mexico” policy.
The same group (with one other representative) also sent the same suggestions to President Trump. (See here).
We need to demand that President Trump get control of the border. Yes, I know he's under pressure from the media, the Democrats, the Deep State, etc., etc., but there are measures (such as those suggested above) which can help improve the situation.
Currently, the administration exudes a sense of helplessness, and that's no good.
After all, Trump is not totally helpless. On May 24, the President announced more troops, aircraft and weaponry are being sent to the Middle East.
Daily Mail title: Trump deploys a dozen fighter jets, surveillance drones and 1,500 more troops to the Middle East and uses emergency powers to allow arms sales to Saudi Arabia over 'threats from Iran' , by AP and David Martosko, Daily Mail, May 24, 2019).
So if Trump can send troops, aircraft and "use emergency powers" to send weapons to the Middle East, why can't he control our southern border?