US taxpayers suffer amid nation’s border crisis

US taxpayers suffer amid nation’s border crisis

US taxpayers suffer amid nation’s border crisis
Migrants line up in southern Mexico on July 1 to join a caravan toward the US border. (REUTERS)
Short Url

One of the biggest internal crises the US has faced over the years is the illegal crossing of its long border with Mexico by migrants. With the steady increase in these numbers, former US President Donald Trump imposed drastic measures, including building a long wall separating the two countries and returning would-be immigrants to Mexico pending a decision on their request.
However, since Joe Biden took office, the number of migrants illegally crossing the Mexico-US border has increased.
The Biden administration was determined to end every immigration policy and enforcement program set by the former president by easing border restrictions, halting the construction of the wall and lifting restrictions on those who enter the country illegally. It also suspended the “Remain in Mexico” program pending a decision by the US Supreme Court, which last week ruled in favor of Biden terminating this policy.
Biden seems to be forgetting the economic and health conditions of the citizens and residents of the US due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the rising inflation rate and the economic consequences of the country’s support for Ukraine in its war with Russia.
In 2021, there was a record number of illegal border crossings at 1.7 million, according to a report published by Politico. The report added that a new analysis indicated that even more are likely to cross this year, creating a more significant crisis along the Mexican border in Texas, Arizona and California.

In early June, government agencies reported encountering more than 1.2 million migrants along the border in 2022. This number is likely to be doubled by the end of the year.
However, despite these record numbers, US Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas in April sent a memorandum to interested parties to provide additional details of the administration’s “comprehensive plan to manage increased encounters of noncitizens at America’s southwest border.” He stated that his department had been executing a thorough and deliberate strategy to secure the borders and build a safe, orderly and humane immigration system.

In early June, government agencies reported encountering more than 1.2 million migrants along the border in 2022.

Dalia Al-Aqidi

“After inheriting a broken and dismantled immigration system, since January 2021 (the Department of Homeland Security) has effectively managed an unprecedented number of noncitizens seeking to enter the United States and interdicted more drugs and disrupted more smuggling operations than ever before,” the memorandum read.
If you look at the issue from a security point of view, you will find that illegal border crossings pose a significant threat to America’s national security. There are no reliable or effective ways to check the background of these people or the countries they came from. Therefore, several of them might be terrorists, assassins, criminals, fugitives from justice or drug dealers.
According to Fox News, Republicans on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee last month issued a report titled “Biden’s Border Crisis: Examining Policies that Encourage Illegal Migration.” The report made a connection between the policies of the Obama administration and those implemented under Biden, highlighting how the latter’s policies have “incentivized illegal migration and undermined the ability of US law enforcement to secure our borders.”
It added: “The Biden administration’s disastrous immigration and border policies, combined with the growing numbers of outward migration from the Western Hemisphere and transnational criminal organizations’ evolving human smuggling and trafficking tactics, have a detrimental impact on the safety and security of the United States.”
It is well known that cartels charge $10,000 to $20,000 per person to be smuggled into the US, making it a hugely profitable illegal business.
Law enforcement in San Antonio, Texas, last week discovered the bodies of dozens of migrants in an abandoned, stifling hot tractor-trailer. They were found without official identification cards or passports, making it difficult for US authorities to identify the victims and notify their governments or families. This terrible human tragedy left 40 men and 13 women dead, while 12 adults and four children were taken to local hospitals for treatment due to dehydration and heat stroke.
This crisis adds to the many challenges faced by Biden as a result of his failed policies, which have increased the burdens on taxpayers, who are suffering from high prices for fuel, food and goods. With the popularity of the president and Vice President Kamala Harris declining, the chances of the Democratic Party maintaining control of the House of Representatives following November’s midterm elections are dwindling, and the odds of it losing the Senate are increasing too.
This would make it very difficult for this administration to implement its agenda over the next two years, meaning the possibility of it losing the White House in 2024 would grow.

Dalia Al-Aqidi is a senior fellow at the Center for Security Policy. Twitter: @DaliaAlAqidi

Disclaimer: Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not necessarily reflect Arab News' point-of-view