Biden officials were reportedly “relieved” that federal courts forced the administration to revive former President Donald Trump’s “Migrant Protection Protocols” — better known as the “Remain in Mexico” policy — amid a record number of illegal immigrant encounters and a continuing border crisis, according to The New York Times.
President Joe Biden made it a priority of his new administration to repeal the Remain in Mexico policy by executive order, allowing asylum seekers to enter the United States and stay in the country while they awaited a hearing on their asylum claims rather than forcing them to “remain in Mexico,” per the policy. Courts, however, struck down Biden’s executive order rescinding the policy, calling it unconstitutional.
In the following months, the number of illegal immigrant encounters at the southern border exploded and, in July, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) detained around 200,000 migrants — the most since the Department of Homeland Security began counting when it was established in 2001.
The New York Times reported Monday that Biden administration officials, struggling with how to stem the endless flow of migrants at the United States-Mexico border, were “relieved” when courts refused to allow the administration to unilaterally rescind Trump’s policy.
“Concern had already been building inside the Biden administration that the speed of its immigration changes may have encouraged migrants to stream toward the United States, current and former officials” told the outlet.
“In fact, some Biden officials were already talking about reviving Mr. Trump’s policy in a limited way to deter migration, said the officials, who have worked on immigration policy but were not authorized to speak publicly about the administration’s internal debates on the issue,” the NY Times continued. “Then the Supreme Court order came, providing the Biden administration with the political cover to adopt the policy in some form without provoking as much ire from Democrats who reviled Mr. Trump’s border policies.”
The order is giving the Biden administration an “opportunity to step back” and reconsider whether opening the border to asylum seekers makes sense.
Politico noted Monday, as well, that the Biden administration is considering a “Remain in Mexico lite” policy that “would require a small number of asylum seekers to wait in Mexico for their cases to be processed but give them better living conditions and access to attorneys, according to three people familiar with the discussions.”
“The administration is starting talks with Mexico in a bid to strike a balance between abiding by a federal court order and making good on the president’s campaign promises,” Politico said.
Part of the problem may be housing. DHS has also encountered a record number of child migrants and efforts to house them have proved complicated. Whistleblowers have leveled complaints about the thousands of children being held at Ft. Bliss, one of the Department of Health and Human Services temporary shelters, and as The Daily Wire reported late last week, the Biden administration appears to have “lost track” of children that left its care and may have transferred some teenagers into the hands of labor traffickers.