Even President Obama Recognized Crisis at Southwest Border
44th President Acknowledged Change in Migration Patterns
WASHINGTON We’ve heard Democrats say there s no humanitarian crisis at the southwest border. They claim that because illegal border crossing apprehensions are lower today than they ve been in the past, we don t need to invest in strong border security. What Democrats fail to mention is that we’ve seen a fundamental change in migration trends, which our immigration system isn t equipped to handle.
During the Obama administration, we saw an influx of families and unaccompanied children increasingly from Central America arriving at our southwest border. Our broken immigration system forces the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to release families and unaccompanied children into the United States where they remain until their asylum process has been completed or they are placed into deportation proceedings, which can take years.
This is a fundamental shift from migration patterns in past decades. In the past, migrants tended to be single adult men from Mexico, whom DHS was able to immediately send back upon apprehension (so long as they determined a migrant had no credible claim of fear of return to Mexico) rather than releasing into the United States like they have to now with families and unaccompanied children.
Even President Obama recognized our immigration laws have caused a humanitarian crisis. Take a look at what he had to say during a 2014 interview with George Stephanopoulos:
Stephanopoulos: There s a humanitarian crisis at the border. Some of your critics have said you need to speak out more directly to the people of Central American and say don t come. If you come, you will be deported.
Obama: We’ve actually we’ve done that. The problem is under current law, once the kids come across the border, there’s a system in which we’re supposed to process them, take care of them, until we can send them back.
Stephanopoulos: Is your message don’t come?
Obama: Our message is absolutely don t send your children, accompanied, on trains or through a bunch of smugglers. That is our direct message to families in Central America. Don t send your children to the borders. If they do make it, they ll get sent back. More importantly, they may not make it.
Bottom line: Our immigration system isn’t able to handle the influx of families and unaccompanied children from Central America that we’ve seen in recent years and leaders from both political parties have recognized this. It’s time for us to address border security once and for all.
Contact: Nicole Hager