Just a few weeks ago, the Biden administration appeared confident that its own policy-induced border crisis was under control. Despite monthly apprehension data showing that the southern border is in free-fall, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) published the August data on September 15 with a rosily worded press release. Biden’s media allies ran with this narrative, all but declaring “Mission Accomplished” because August’s roughly 209,000 apprehensions were lower than July’s 213,534 apprehensions.
But the border has not been under control since Biden took office and, remarkably, the situation worsened in September. The same week Biden’s Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was patting itself on the back for the August apprehension data, my colleague Todd Bensman reported that approximately 10,000 Haitians converged on a beachhead in Del Rio, Texas. As one CBP officer told Bensman, “In my 20-year career, I have never seen anything this out of control.”
The Biden administration’s response confirmed that the administration is incapable of controlling the border and that many of its allies in Congress and the media truly oppose any amount of immigration enforcement. In an effort to show the American people that it is doing something, DHS began repatriating some Haitians back to Haiti, even though most have been living in Chile and Brazil for a number of years. This decision must have been based on the horrible optics of seeing the large number of Haitians huddled up under a Texas bridge when you contrast that with the unlawful amnesty lite DHS Secretary Mayorkas granted over the summer to 100,000 Haitians who were already dispersed throughout the country. Of course, the number deported pales in comparison to the number of illegal-alien Haitians being released into the interior.
Even this minimal amount of immigration enforcement was too much for the open-borders advocates. In response, they manufactured a faux controversy claiming that Border Patrol agents on horseback were whipping the illegal aliens. This led to the U.S. special envoy for Haiti, a bureaucrat who works for the secretary of State to quit his post, essentially calling the deportation of inadmissible Haitians “inhumane”. Then, BuzzFeed published a piece highlighting the in-fighting amongst Biden political appointees, showing a clear divide between those (unnamed) who want to allow all of the Haitians in regardless of U.S. immigration law and those (also unnamed) who advocate for actually enforcing the law to deter future caravans of illegal aliens. Interestingly, the BuzzFeed piece also referenced 20 unnamed DHS career officials, likely USCIS asylum officers based on leaks that occurred during the Trump administration, similarly expressing angst over the Biden administration’s partial enforcement of the law.
There have already been a notable number of high-level Biden DHS political appointees resigning after less than a year on the job, raising the specter that those decisions were motivated by the reckless and chaotic immigration policies of the White House. The situation at the border is unlikely to improve anytime soon, as President Biden kowtowed to the hysterical “whipping” crowd and suspended the horse patrol, despite the animal being perfectly built for Border Patrol agents to easily navigate and traverse the rough terrain around the border.