- The possible end of the Title 42 pandemic-related public health order could mean a huge surge of migrants crossing the southern border, immigration experts told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reevaluates the policy every 60 days and is expected to discontinue it as soon as March 30, CBS News reported.
- “So the result of that not only will act as another incentive, you’re going to see illegal immigration expand to historic highs past what we saw the past 12 months, you’re going to have to release people faster and more efficiently,” former acting director of U.S. Customs and Border Protection Mark Morgan told the DCNF.
The Biden administration could allow a key pandemic-era border security measure to expire as soon as Wednesday, CBS News reported.
The measure, referred to as Title 42, was put in place by the Trump administration in March 2020 and allows border agents to immediately turn away migrants in order to reduce the spread of COVID-19, CBS reported. The order is responsible for the expulsion of over 1.7 million migrants, according to Customs and Border Protection (CBP).
If the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) chooses not to extend the rule, it would deprive border patrol of a key tool in fighting illegal migration, immigration experts told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
The other method of expulsion that will remain if the CDC were not to renew Title 42 would be Title 8, which allows for border authorities to determine whether an individual is inadmissible.
The Biden administration is posturing itself for an influx of migrants as Title 42’s fate still remains a question and U.S. officials are quietly preparing for a surge of over 170,000 migrants at the southern border if the order were to end, Axios reported. Publicly, the administration hasn’t said whether the order will end.
.@JacquiHeinrich: “Can you confirm Title 42 is about to end then?”
Kate Bedingfield: “I have no announcement that I can make on Title 42 at this time.” pic.twitter.com/9mfLCyFngD
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) March 29, 2022
House Homeland Security Committee Ranking Member Rep. John Katko told the Daily Caller News Foundation that the Biden administration’s “consistent erosion” of Title 42 has served as “a pull factor and contributed to the record-breaking number of encounters at our border over the last year.”
“CBP continues to rely heavily on Title 42 authority to expel single adults that cross the border, as single adults continue to make up the majority of CBP encounters at the southwest border. As numerous countries continue to struggle with the rapid spread of COVID-19 and strengthening variants, the very purpose of Title 42 is to prevent the introduction of any dangerous communicable disease into the United States,” Katko explained.
“As the U.S. finally gets a handle on managing the spread of new variants and moves steadily toward a post-pandemic recovery, now is not the time to end the use of Title 42 and jeopardize all of that progress,” he said. “The bottom line is that our border security and immigration system cannot handle any more pulls as the Biden administration has proven unwilling to secure the border. I’d like to know what the administration’s plan is to address an even larger surge of migrants once Title 42 expires.”
Former acting Director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and acting CBP Commissioner Mark Morgan, who served in the Trump administration, told the DCNF that Title 42’s implementation under Biden has been “a good thing” because it’s resulted in over 1 million illegal immigrants being removed under his watch. (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Rep. Gooden Demands Biden Provide Plan For Title 42’s Reported End)
“It’s frustrating that they claim that you know, they inherited a dismantled and inhumane system, yet one of the leading policies under Trump they kept in place to in fact, remove over a million illegal aliens,” Morgan explained. “So, there’s a lot of hypocrisy there. But, in my opinion, make no mistake, this saved countless American lives, and resulted in the prevention of untold amount of suffering on the U.S. side.”
The end of Title 42, Morgan said, will cause a surge of migrants crossing the border that will further overwhelm an overloaded Border Patrol dealing with facilities that are, in some sectors, exceedingly over capacity, leading them to quickly process and release migrants into the country.
“Again, because they’re not concerned about stopping the flow of illegal immigration, securing our borders, everything that they’re doing now, with respect to policy, and preparing for this, is just to get better and faster at releasing people,” Morgan said. “And what that means is that there’s no way when you have 7,000 to 8,000 illegal aliens per day, over 200,000 per month, over 150 different countries that you’re going to properly vet and actually know who you’re actually releasing in the United States. It’s impossible. ”
“So the result of that not only will act as another incentive, you’re going to see illegal immigration expand to historic highs past what we saw the past 12 months, you’re going to have to release people faster and more efficiently. And we’re going to be releasing people into the United States that we have no idea who they are, that’s going to equate to increased jeopardy to this country, and American lives are going to be lost,” he said.
Morgan predicted that in March, because of the question surrounding Title 42’s fate, there will be 200,000 apprehensions and 60,000 got aways, which are migrants that evade arrest due to border agents having to do processing rather than patrolling the frontlines of the border.
America First Legal counsel and former Trump administration official John Zadrozny made similar predictions about what could happen at the border if the order were to end.
“If the Title 42 health authority is not extended, the volume of aliens that the Biden administration will be able to let into the United States will increase substantially, strain American law enforcement resources further, and put even more Americans at risk,” Zadrozny told the DCNF.
Morgan explained that the cartels and smugglers will see Title 42’s end as an opening for their nefarious operations at the border. He said they’ll find that Border Patrol will be processing more people for release into the country and see it as an open invitation to bring more people through.
“What’s going to happen now is that it’s another clear message and calling card that our borders are wide open, and the cartels and smugglers are already using the rhetoric on the anticipated demise of Title 42 to increase illegal immigration, they’re already telling millions of illegal aliens, millions of immigrants, now’s the time to come,” Morgan said.
“Because that million that were removed, you’re no longer going to be removed, you’re going to be allowed in,” he added. “And that’s exactly what is happening, you’re going to see the march numbers are going to be in excess of 200,000. And that’s partly based on the rhetoric that Title 42 was going to end before it actually is ended.”
The Department of Homeland Security, nor CBP responded to multiple requests for comment.