January 26, 2022
By Dale Wilcox
Over a year into his term, Joe Biden has made immigration chaos what will be remembered as the signature policy of this presidency. Long after Biden is gone, America and its citizens will continue to pay for his recklessness.
The White House has taken many steps to erode America’s sovereignty, including attempting to end the Remain-in-Mexico policy, reinstating catch-and-release, and gutting the Title 42 policy, to name a few.
Now, one report indicates that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has mostly ceased deportation operations, and is essentially giving illegal aliens free reign in the U.S. Roughly six-in-seven illegal aliens released into the U.S. are evading removal, according to newly released government data.
The data was originally released by Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson’s office, and found that between March and August 2021, DHS released over 100,000 migrants into the U.S. with Notices to Report. Just over 15 percent of those people ended up receiving a Notice to Appear, which signals the start of deportation proceedings.
Johnson has repeatedly pressed DHS for information on the number of migrants being released into the U.S., but so far the agency has not stated how many migrants were released into the U.S. last year.
DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas had previously said at a Senate hearing that “approximately 75 percent” of migrants released in the U.S. with Notices to Report end up reporting for their court hearing, an assertion that this data sharply contradicts.
The lack of transparency from the Biden administration on their immigration policy has been striking. Last year was the first year in a decade where the U.S. government didn’t release a report on deportations, ending a decades-long bipartisan practice.
The Biden administration has also allegedly been dispersing illegal aliens throughout the U.S. through secretive, night-time flights that some have called “ghost-flights.” These flights have allegedly been used by ICE to fly hundreds of illegal aliens at a time into states including New York, Pennsylvania and Florida.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki acknowledged last year that the administration had been using ghost flights to settle illegal aliens in New York, but the White House has thus far been silent on accusations that they are doing the same in other states. Some elected officials in those states, including Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, have suggested that they might start shipping illegal aliens who have been imported to their states to Joe Biden’s home state of Delaware.
In fact, DeSantis is seeking $8 million in his state’s upcoming budget to bus illegal aliens from Florida to Delaware. It is the latest sign that states and localities have become fed up with the Biden administration’s refusal to enforce immigration law, and are taking matters into their own hands in order to protect the rights and interests of their citizens. The federal government has provided virtually no leadership on this issue, and seems content to just release illegal aliens into the U.S. without conditions.
One of the first moves Biden made after taking office was to reinstate the Obama-era catch-and-release program, which essentially allows the unconditional release of illegal aliens into the U.S. pending a hearing in front of a judge. Typically, migrants who are released as part of the catch-and-release program are given a Notice to Appear in front of a judge, and sent on their way.
As the data from Johnson’s office shows, and despite the best efforts of senior Biden administration officials to deny this obvious reality, the vast majority of those released do not show up for their immigration hearings, and are simply allowed to disappear into the country. This is the crux of our country’s problems at the border, and a major reason why it is so hard to find accurate data on how many illegal aliens are in this country.
While most official estimates put the number of illegal aliens living in the U.S. at around 11 million, a 2018 study from Yale found the real number to be twice as high, with roughly 22 million illegal aliens living in the U.S. That number has almost certainly increased over the past four years. In 2021, nearly two million aliens were apprehended at the border. In addition, more than four hundred thousand illegal aliens were detected crossing the border by immigration authorities but evaded capture and are now in the U.S.
Ultimately, we have no idea how many illegal aliens are living in our country, and that is a scary predicament for our nation. While the Biden administration is not solely to blame for this decades-long problem, their actions have turned a problem into a crisis, and their lack of transparency suggests they may be importing a lot more illegal aliens than have previously been reported.
Dale L. Wilcox is executive director and general counsel at the Immigration Reform Law Institute, a public interest law firm working to defend the rights and interests of the American people from the negative effects of mass migration.
Also published at: Dale L. Wilcox, Biden Inherited a Border Problem and Turned It into a Crisis, Townhall, January 26, 2022.
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