UNITED STATES– The Biden administration recently expanded the Central American Minors (CAM) program. Prior to that, over 4,000 kids and teenagers were reportedly allowed into the United States under the current administration.
The CAM program was initiated under the Obama administration, however former President Donald Trump ended it in August of 2017. The State Department under Biden restarted the program on March 10th.
— @ Robert (@Robertfata1) June 20, 2021
On Tuesday, June 15th, the Biden administration announced steps to expand CAM, a move that the State Department believes could make tens of thousands of new applicants eligible, Breitbart reported.
The Wall Street Journal’s Michelle Hackman reported that day:
“Before the program was terminated, 1,450 children entered the U.S. under humanitarian parole, and another 2,700 had been conditionally approved [for a total of 4,150], according to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services [USCIS], the agency that handles legal immigration.”
However, when Hackman posted her report to Twitter, she provided a slightly larger total from the State Department of migrants under 21 admitted as refugees or on humanitarian parole, which could be subject to renewal but does not provide legal immigration status.
Her tweet read:
“Got new Central American Minors program numbers: Since the program’s inception, more than 2,600 applicants have been resettled to the U.S. as refugees, and more than 2,200 have been admitted under parole, per State Dept.,”
Got new Central American Minors program numbers: Since the program’s inception, more than 2,600 applicants have been resettled to the U.S. as refugees, and more than 2,200 have been admitted under parole, per State Dept. https://t.co/D9qv3nuXUl
— Michelle Hackman (@MHackman) June 16, 2021
There was no explanation given as to why the numbers from USCIS and the State do not match.
The 650 additional minors that the State Department said were allowed into the U.S. may stem from the Biden administration reopening cases after they were closed when Trump terminated CAM, Breitbart reported.
On Tuesday, June 15th, State Antony Blinken and the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Alejandro Mayorkas issued a joint statement stating:
“We continue to reopen cases that were closed when CAM was terminated.”
The Journal learned that as of Tuesday, the Biden administration had not begun accepting applications to the program, which affects minors from the Central American countries of Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador, since it was restarted on March 10th.
And, don't think for one second that they are not making plans right now to import their entire family. At our expense. 4,000 probably isn't even close.
— Pam Smith (@lynxlaughing) June 21, 2021
Last week, Ricardo Zuniga, the U.S. special envoy for the three counties weighed in on the situation, blaming logistical challenges for the delay in processing new applications.
Zuniga told reporters last week:
“There was a pretty sizable backlog, still from the gaps that were left in that period. So, especially in this period where we are organizing ourselves at a time where we have our own issues related to logistics around the pandemic, there are challenges with getting ourselves up and running.”
According to Breitbart, when the Obama-Biden administration launched CAM in 2014, it allowed parents living legally in the U.S. to petition to have their children join them to diminish the number of kids traveling alone. It also permitted minors attempting to go to the U.S. to apply for refugee status and await the processing of their applications in their home countries.
The expansion will not only allow Central American migrants with approved claims to petition for their minor children to live with them, those with pending asylum claims will also be allowed to take advantage of the petition.
The expansion will allow federal agents to fly children and teenagers into America on the U.S. taxpayer’s dime.
All of this comes as the number of illegal immigrants attempting to cross the border is at an all time high. Law Enforcement Today recently reported at least 250,000 immigrants gained illegal entry into the United States in the first six months of Biden’s administration. Here is more on that story.
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DEL RIO, Texas – U.S. Customs and Border Protection reported that the total number of illegal immigrants who escaped capture, or “got-aways”, and entered the country illegally this year will reach 250,000 as of June 13.
“Got-aways” are loosely defined as migrants crossing the border and escaping after being observed by border patrol either through visual observation of officers, video from aircraft, or physical evidence like footprints on the ground.
The method of counting is limited, and experts suspect the actual number is much higher than the calculation.
The report comes from an agency source speaking exclusively to Breitbart News. The source said that 50,000 escaped over the last 30 days. On average, 1,600 migrants escape capture each day.
In comparison, 69,000 migrant “got-aways” successfully evade Border Patrol in all of 2020, according to the report. According to Breitbart:
“The metric is usually not publicly released. It is achieved by counting illegal immigrants who ultimately escape apprehension after being observed by aircraft and camera systems.
“Border Patrol agents also use traditional sign-cutting techniques to spot footprints. It is not a perfect investigative method. Sources say the got-away count is usually lower than reality.”
Critics say that the lenient policies of the Biden administration and the increased humanitarian workload on the Border Patrol have contributed to the number of illegal immigrants escaping into the United States.
The Biden administration came under fire from the nation’s sheriffs in April for failing to control the ongoing border crisis. Hundreds of sheriffs from dozens of states sent a letter to the President pushing him to change course.
The letter, signed by 275 sheriffs from 39 states warned the President of dangerous repercussions if he continued to allow illegal immigrants to flow into the country. The letter, released by the Federation for American Immigration Reform, read:
“America’s Sheriffs are deeply troubled about the dangerous impacts your administration’s border policies are having on our citizens, legal residents, and communities.
You must act now before our nation’s public safety resources are overwhelmed with the criminal side effects of unchecked illegal immigration, including transnational gangs, guns, dangerous drugs, and human trafficking.”
In the letter, the sheriffs address the crime associated with the flow of illegals entering the country:
“As this situation continues to evolve, more families will be exposed to the violence associated with drug trafficking and transnational gangs. More parents will suffer the loss of their children, not because they were irresponsible, but because of exposure to criminal illegal alien violence caused by the reckless and irresponsible policies of your administration.
“In a myriad of ways, you and your administration are encouraging and sanctioning lawlessness and the victimization of the people of the United States of America, all in the name of mass illegal immigration.”
The sheriffs did not mince words when appointing blame for the crisis. President Biden’s promises of immigration leniency and reduced immigration enforcement orders are to blame, according to the letter:
“In the interests of ending the undermining of our laws and the increased risks to the safety and security of the people of the United States of America, we respectfully request that you immediately reverse course on your pro-illegal immigration policies, resume the border wall construction, and embrace the common-sense, public-safety-supporting border policies of the previous administration.”
The Biden administration has refused to call the situation at the border a crisis, but the numbers are making that refusal difficult to continue. Unaccompanied children have proven especially difficult for the President.
In March, border agents encountered nearly 19,000 children at the border, the largest number ever recorded in a single month.
The federal government has more than 20,000 children in detention facilities. Government projections show there could be more than 35,000 migrant children to care for at the end of June.
In April, emails directly to federal employees asking them to volunteer for paid leave to help care for the unaccompanied minors. The emails were sent to employees at agencies including the Department of Homeland Security and NASA, according to a report by The New York Times.
In an Operational Update for May 2021, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBD) said it encountered 180,034 persons attempting entry along the Southwest Border during the month, a one percent increase from the same time period in 2020.
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