Biden administration has released more than 61,000 migrants into the US – many WITHOUT court dates – since February as border system struggles to cope with arrival surge
- Customs and Border Protection released 47 migrants from October to December last year
- But latest figures show more than 61,000 people were released into the country since February
- They were given either a Notice to Appear before an immigration judge or an I-385 form which means they have to report to ICE later instead
- Critics say it is an ‘honor system’ which isn’t working
More than 61,000 migrants who arrived illegally in the U.S. have been released into the country, according to federal data, as the Biden Administration scrambles to cope with a surge at the border.
The numbers show that Customs and Border Protection released just 47 between October and the end of December.
But that skyrocketed in the months that followed President Biden’s inauguration, with 61,312 released since February with either a Notice to Appear before an immigration judge or an I-385 which fast tracks migrants out of custody and on to Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
It means they many are being released without a court date.
The Biden administration is accused of ignoring a crisis that has seen arrival numbers surge at the southern border. Officials blame the previous administration for dismantling the immigration system but Republicans say Democrats fail to grasp the scale of the problem
Migrants cross into the US from Mexico along Rio Bravo on May 19,2021 in Ciudad Juarez Mexico.According to unofficial estimates approximately 200,000 migrants have crossed into the United States along the southern border since February 2021
The data, first reported by the Washington Examiner, will be seized on by critics as more evidence that the Biden administration is unable to take control of the border crisis.
Graphs presented at a Senate hearing last week illustrated the way border detentions had accelerated since Joe Biden was sworn in as president.
And opponents point to the way former President Trump’s policies, including construction of a border wall, and agreements with Northern Triangle countries have been abandoned.
The result, they say, is new figures showing 178,000 migrants were apprehended at the southern border in April – the highest monthly total in two decades.
Rep. Henry Cuellar, a Texas Democrat, told the Washington Examiner that border officials were too busy processing the surging numbers to identify the court where immigrants will be seen.
‘It’s an honor system document. It’s an admission and release document, not a notice to appear [in court],’ he said.
Administration officials have steered away from using the term ‘crisis,’ much to the fury of Republicans.
‘Our nation’s southern border is still in crisis,’ said Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell.
‘The Biden administration still won’t admit it. Much of the media would prefer not to cover it.
‘But the facts are clear. And they’re unacceptable.’
Biden and his officials insist the problems are the legacy of Trump’s efforts to dismantle the immigration system.
Last week Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas tried to deliver an upbeat message to the Senate Homeland Security Committee.
He said the Biden administration had made progress in ensuring that children were not being held at crowded border stations, reducing the number from 5,700 in late March to less than 500.
‘The challenge is not behind us, but the results are dramatic,’ he said.