Even before Joe Biden is sworn in as president, his administration is facing an immigration crisis entirely of the Democrats’ making.
After repeatedly promising to reverse the Trump administration’s strict immigration and border policies, the incoming Biden administration suddenly realizes there are consequences. Biden’s message to would-be migrants, reports NBC News, is this: Don’t come — at least not yet. A senior Biden administration transition official is quoted as saying that migrants “need to understand they’re not going to be able to come into the United States immediately.”
But the migrants aren’t waiting. Inspired by hopes of getting into the United States under a more lenient Biden administration, a caravan of some 8,000 Hondurans are currently making their way toward the southwest border. On Friday, advance elements of the caravan clashed with Guatemalan soldiers at the border of the two countries, with two separate groups of more than 3,000 people forcing their way into Guatemala. The caravan could reach the US-Mexico border in a matter of weeks.
The news should come as no surprise to anyone who has paid attention to Biden’s campaign rhetoric over the past year. When you promise to end — “on Day One”—a Trump program that requires Central American asylum-seekers to wait in Mexico while their cases are being adjudicated, effectively endorsing a return to the “catch-and-release” policies of the past, it’s entirely reasonable for thousands of Hondurans to conclude that if they can get into the US after Biden is sworn in, they can stay.
Perhaps realizing this, in recent weeks, the incoming administration has been scrambling to temper its messaging about the border in hopes of forestalling a crisis. In late December, Biden said he would roll back Trump’s immigration policies at a slower pace than he initially promised to avoid having “2 million people on our border.” It will probably take six months, he said, to create a new system to process tens of thousands of asylum-seekers, and his team is “setting up the guardrails” to avoid a surge of illegal immigration this spring.
Well, sorry, but it’s too late. Biden tore down the guardrails that Trump built when the president-elect promised to do away with the current administration’s border policies — policies that had been effective at curbing illegal immigration and largely securing the border during the pandemic.
Biden is opening the door to a mess on Day 1 – New York Post