Jennie Taer on November 22, 2022
Illegal migrants will flood the southern border when a signature Trump-era policy ends in late December, adding to the chaos federal authorities already experienced in fiscal year 2022, according to former Border Patrol Chief Rodney Scott and an agent on the southern border who spoke with the Daily Caller News Foundation.
A federal judge paused a ruling ending Title 42, a public health order used to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 that’s expelled more than one million illegal migrants, on Dec. 21 to ensure the Biden administration has time to prepare for a surge at the southern border. The influx will stress the capacity of Border Patrol even more than it has recently under record illegal migrant encounters, Scott told the DCNF.
“Believe it or not, getting rid of title 42 is going to make it even worse,” Scott said.
Federal border authorities encountered more than 2.3 million migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border in fiscal year 2022.
The administration will add a number of resources and personnel to the southern border to mitigate the influx, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said Thursday during a Senate Homeland Security Committee hearing. The plan will include faster processing of illegal migrants, targeting of smugglers and aiding nonprofit organizations, Mayorkas told Republican Sen. James Lankford.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will have to now rely mostly on Title 8, an expulsion order for those who lack legitimate asylum claims, which is a much more time consuming process for agents already pulled off the frontlines of the border, according to Scott.
“To change them from Title 42 to Title 8 is about another hour worth of processing so they’re gonna have to come up with another 76,000 man hours to be able to put in computer time, bandwidth, all the above to be able to process these people. That’s what it comes down to,” Scott explained.
A Border Patrol agent working along the southern border said there will be “riots and mobs” among illegal migrants who authorities caught multiple times under Title 42, in a statement to the DCNF on the condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly. If a migrant illegally crossed the border and was expelled previously under Title 42 and continued to attempt to enter the country, they will face penalties that include up to life barred from entry into the U.S. under Title 8.
“Title 42 ending is just another example of the blatant ignorance and disconnect from D.C.,” the agent said. “While agents across the board don’t agree with the effectiveness of title 42, doing away with it would mean riots and mobs forming at the POEs [Ports of Entry] again on top of the endless waves of ‘refugees’ DC wants to let in. Another mess from Washington the agents have to clean up.”
Title 8 has been used to process many of the illegal migrants released into the country with court dates, several Border Patrol agents previously told the DCNF.
The Biden administration has wrongly relied on Title 42 to curb migration, rather than COVID-19, Scott said.
“Whether we like it or not, it’s not immigration authority that is not intended as a migration tool. We implemented it as a public health tool,” Scott said.
“We couldn’t keep our personnel or America safe. So it was implemented flat out no questions asked, based on protecting America from COVID,” he added.
Scott believes that unless there’s a public health crisis, Title 42 needs to end. The Biden administration has currently been using the policy as a migration policy and imposing it for only certain nationalities, like migrants from Venezuela.
“So when the pandemic goes away, and the country seems to be getting back to normal, then whether we like it or not Title 42 needs to go away. The integrity of the system says that is a Health and Human Services [HHS] integration tool,” Scott said.
DHS, CBP and the White House didn’t respond to requests for comment.
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