US southern border saw nearly 200,000 migrant encounters in July as border crisis rolls on

FIRST ON FOX: Customs and Border Protection (CBP) made nearly 200,000 migrant encounters in July, according to figures obtained by Fox News Digital, suggesting a still-ongoing migrant crisis despite a slight dip in the already high numbers being encountered.

There were 199,976 migrant encounters at the border in July. That’s lower than the 213,593 encountered in July 2021, a slight decrease from the 207,416 encountered in June 2022, and the lowest number encountered since February.

But the almost 200,000 encounters still represents a stubbornly high number of migrants hitting the border and a continuing border crisis that has overwhelmed agents and border communities and dogged the Biden administration.

Two-thirds of all migrants encountered were single adults, with 134,362 encounters in July, but just 74,573 encounters resulted in an expulsion under the Title 42 public health order — an order put in place during the Trump administration and that the Biden administration has sought to abolish but has so far been blocked by court order. This relatively low number of removals is in part due to the increase in migrants coming from countries such as Venezuela, Nicaragua and Cuba, which are not subject to Title 42 due to the Mexican government’s refusal to take them.

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Republicans have sought to blame the Biden administration for the crisis at the border, pointing to the rollback of Trump-era policies that include border wall construction and the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP). The administration recently said it would be ending the program — known as the “Remain-in-Mexico” policy, which kept migrants in Mexico for their immigration hearings rather than releasing them into the country — after the Supreme Court ruled in its favor. However, the administration has also suffered defeats in court and is currently being blocked from enforcing its narrowed Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) deportation and arrest priorities.

The Biden administration, meanwhile, has pointed to the regional nature of the crisis and has sought to tackle root causes like poverty and corruption in Central America. The administration has recently sought to slash asylum processing times with a new rule and has touted new immigration commitments after the Summit of the Americas — which has included a new crackdown on the smuggling industry, resulting in more than 3,000 arrests in just three months. However, it also recently gave the green light to projects to fill in gaps in the border wall in Yuma, Arizona.

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Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas recently claimed that the border is “secure,” a claim that brought pushback from officials at the border and Republican lawmakers. FBI Director Christopher Wray recently said the border presents “significant security issues” when asked about Mayorkas’ remarks.

The ongoing crisis has recently sparked a feud between the Republican border states of Texas and Arizona and the Democratic-run cities of New York City and Washington, D.C. The states have been busing thousands of migrants to the cities, sparking pushback and cries for federal aid from the cities’ mayors.

Mayor Muriel Bowser has called for the federal government to step up and offer more support, requesting that the D.C. Armory be used as a processing center and calling on the Pentagon to deploy the National Guard. That request has so far been denied.

New York City Mayor Eric Adams has also called for help from the federal government, saying that the 4,000 migrants that have gone through the NYC shelter system in recent months has strained the Big Apple’s resources, despite its commitments to helping migrants.

“We just need help. We need help,” Adams said in a press conference. “And we’re going to have some specific items that we’re going to go over with the president. But we want assistance. We believe FEMA should step in.”

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has said voters in Texas are “fed up” with the chaos at the border under the Biden administration.

“And that is exactly why we are sending these illegal immigrants to places like Washington, D.C., and New York City,” he said.

A White House official told Fox News Digital that the White House has “been in regular contact with Mayor Adams and his team and are committed to working with them as we do effectively with other local leaders through FEMA funding and other support.”

“As we have always said, there is a process in place for managing migration flows, and Republicans governors should stop meddling in that process and using desperate migrants as political tools,” the official said.

Fox News’ Bill Melugin contributed to this report.


Source: Politics

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