Migrants in Mexico are reportedly awaiting President-elect Joe Biden’s administration as they hope he will end President Donald Trump’s anti-fraud initiative at the United States-Mexico border that has deterred illegal immigration.
Last year, Trump implemented the “Remain in Mexico” policy that allows Border Patrol agents to swiftly return migrants to Mexico while they await their asylum hearings in the U.S. — effectively ending the long-running catch and release program whereby migrants would be released into the interior of the country while awaiting their hearings.
The Remain in Mexico policy has helped massively reduce asylum fraud at the southern border.
Data from the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse at Syracuse University (TRAC), published in the Wall Street Journal, reveals that about 85 percent of asylum cases by Central Americans are rejected and a total of nearly 70,000 migrants have been returned to their native countries after not meeting asylum requirements since the program’s inception.
Now, as Biden is expected to take office in late January, migrants are looking to his administration to end Remain in Mexico so as to return to the catch and release program that flourished under President Obama’s administration.
TRAC data finds that tens of thousands of migrants actually give up on their asylum cases while they wait in Mexico because they are aware that their claims are not valid. To date, more than 31,000 migrants have left Mexico and returned to their native countries without having their cases heard.
A migrant who spoke to the Journal, Pedro Luis Ruiz, has been living in Mexico while awaiting his asylum hearing but hopes Biden will speed up the process and allow migrants like him into the U.S. without having had their cases adjudicated.
“I won’t throw in the towel, much less now that there’s a change of administration in the U.S.,” Ruiz told the Journal. In Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, alone, there are about 8,000 migrants awaiting asylum cases who could be processed into the U.S. if Remain in Mexico is ended by Biden.
This month, there have already been two protests by migrants waiting in Mexico, demanding Biden end Remain in Mexico.
On December 4, migrants waiting in Mexico and activists on the U.S.-side of the southern border marched against Remain in Mexico while, days ago, migrants in Tijuana, Mexico, protested with signs requesting Biden end the policy.
“Trump and Biden — humanitarian asylum for Central Americans in the United States, without sending them back to Mexico to wait,” a sign held by a migrant protestor read.
While Biden and his advisers have said they will immediately end Trump’s asylum agreements with Central America — the cooperative endeavors that have allowed border patrol to quickly return border crossers arriving without grounds for asylum — they have suggested Remain in Mexico will be ended at a later date.
As Breitbart News reported, more than 67,000 border crossers were apprehended at the U.S.-Mexico border in November — more than double the roughly 33,500 who were apprehended in November 2019. About 58,500 of those arrested last month were single adults, while nearly 4,500 were unaccompanied alien children (UACs).
In the first two months of fiscal year 2021, for instance, close to 135,000 border crossers were apprehended by border patrol. This accounts for a seven-year apprehension high during these months.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.