Title 42 is set to expire this week after being enacted under the Trump administration. Photo by Todd Bensman.
When I checked into my hotel this week in the Mexican border city of Matamoros, across from Brownsville, Texas, near the Gulf of Mexico, I was surprised to learn that many of my fellow guests had traveled more than 7,000 miles from their homes in the Central Asian republic of Kyrgyzstan.
This is not your father’s illegal immigration.
Upon Joe Biden’s inauguration, people smugglers and their customers worldwide responded to what they called the new president’s “la Invitación” to cross the US border illegally.
Over the past two-plus years, the Biden-Harris administration has released more than two million illegal immigrants into the United States, with another 1.5 million “got-aways” facing no interior deportation, prompting ever more to come and try their luck.
All that happened while something known by the nickname “Title 42” was still in place. Title 42 public health orders were issued during COVID and allowed Border Patrol agents to expel border jumpers without hearings.
It was the only Trump-era border measure the current administration kept in place, though it’s been using it for an ever-smaller share of migrants.
But Title 42 ends this week, and I wanted to see for myself what was happening, so I drove down to the southernmost point of the Texas/Mexico border. . . .