President Joe Biden’s campaign to catch and release as many illegal immigrants into the United States as possible received a boost Tuesday when a federal judge in Washington, D.C., disallowed the continued use of Title 42 to block illegal immigrants from entering the U.S.
Biden began rolling back the application of Title 42 on his first day in office, first ending its use against unaccompanied minors before extending the loophole to families. This spring Biden tried to end the use of Title 42 entirely, but he was blocked by a federal judge in Louisiana. Despite the judge’s order, Biden continued to increase the number of loopholes in his Title 42 policy.
In President Donald Trump’s last full month in office, 84% of immigrants arrested for illegally crossing the southern border were returned to Mexico under Title 42. By last month, Biden’s many Title 42 loopholes had reduced that percentage to just 34%. To put hard numbers to these percentages, if Title 42 had not been in effect last month, Biden would have released about 230,000 illegal immigrants into the country, instead of the approximately 150,000 that were actually released.
But that assumes the number of immigrants arrested for illegally crossing the border stays the same. If the past is any indication, the number of immigrants illegally crossing the southern border will rise now that they know Biden will let more of them in.
Before Biden became president, less than 75,000 immigrants were being arrested for illegally crossing the southern border each month. By Biden’s first full month in office, February 2021, that number jumped to 100,000 and by July 2021 it had reached 200,000.
Immigrants released by Biden into the United States are placed in deportation proceedings where they then can assert asylum as a defense against deportation. Very few of these immigrants qualify for asylum, however, because they are economic immigrants coming here to make a better living for their families. While wanting to make more money for your family is admirable, poverty is not a legally valid basis for an asylum claim.
While very few of the immigrants released by Biden into the United States will qualify for asylum, almost all of them will be allowed to stay forever as long as they do not commit any serious felonies and even then Biden is unlikely to try and deport them.
That is why so many immigrants have crossed the southern border illegally since Biden became president. They know he will let them in and that he will make no effort to deport them after they lose their asylum claim. Tuesday’s ruling will only make the current crisis worse.