How the Biden Administration is Battling the Border Surge

by -45 Views

The extraordinary surge in migration across the Americas has become the single most dominant issue in the relationship between the United States and Mexico. U.S. authorities stopped migrants 2.8 million times at its southern border in the 12 months ending in September — breaking the previous record set a year earlier.

The two countries, linked by geography, share a common interest: trying to dissuade people from trying to illegally cross an already overwhelmed border. As the numbers have hit new highs, President Biden has leaned more heavily into enforcement designed to drive down unauthorized crossings.

How is Biden able to pursue these increasingly aggressive measures? With help from the Mexican government. Mexico has agreed to take in a growing number of the migrants that the U.S. is swiftly expelling after they enter the country.

This month, Biden announced some of his toughest actions yet: a policy that would deny a specific group of migrants the chance to apply for asylum if they cross the border without authorization, and would instead send them to Mexico.

Progressives laid into the president over the sweeping restrictions, which one immigrant advocate called “a humanitarian disgrace.”

I’ve been covering these issues for almost three years as The Times’s Mexico bureau chief, and I’ve noticed that as desperation on both sides of the border has ratcheted up in recent months, so has cooperation between the two governments.

That dynamic was on display at a summit in Mexico City this week between Biden and his Mexican and Canadian counterparts. I was struck by Biden’s obvious investment in building a rapport with Mexico’s president, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, whose help he needs more than ever.

Biden thanked Mexico for helping manage what he called “the greatest migration in human history” and defended his approach as a “middle” way between “extremes” in immigration policy ideas on the left and right.

In today’s newsletter, I’ll look at why so many people are migrating right now and what the U.S. and Mexico are trying to do about it.

So many people are migrating right now because of how bad life has gotten south of the border over the past few years. Latin America was hit with particular force by the pandemic and the economic downturn that followed.

The ranks of the poor in the region would grow by up to 45 million, the United Nations estimated. Hunger — driven by inflation, the war in Ukraine and the effects of climate change — is on the rise.

Unlike most of the rest of the world, when suffering hits Latin America, its hundreds of millions of residents can decide to walk to the United States.

Migrants have become so desperate that they are braving a 66-mile trek across a treacherous stretch of jungle at the Colombia-Panama border known as the Darién Gap. Once considered barely passable, it is now a thoroughfare for record numbers of migrants. Between 2010 and 2020, fewer than 11,000 people crossed on average each year. Last year, more than 248,000 people made the journey.

Biden came to office two years ago vowing to undo the Trump administration’s harsh migration policies in favor of more “humane” treatment of people fleeing their homes because they couldn’t eat, or were trying to escape violence.

Soon after his inauguration, Biden moved to stop immediately expelling unaccompanied children and tried to freeze deportations. (A judge halted the effort.)

But after a surge of migrants followed, the Biden administration eventually embraced stricter enforcement.

The administration had already benefited from what many consider to be a de facto border wall: a pandemic measure known as Title 42 that allows U.S. officials to quickly deport migrants who have crossed into the country illegally.

But Biden had been effectively prevented from applying that measure to Nicaraguans, Venezuelans, Haitians and Cubans — four nationalities that have become a growing source of migration. The governments in those countries were making it difficult to send their citizens back home, so Mexico was generally refusing to accept them.

Earlier this month, Biden announced that he had found a way to swiftly expel those migrants; Mexico had agreed to receive up to 30,000 of them per month.

Mexico’s government is seeking the same thing as the U.S.: to reduce the number of migrants coming through its borders.

The influx is hard for Mexico, the government says, because it strains already thin public resources and puts money into the hands of organized criminal groups that are smuggling people through. It’s also bad for migrants, who are forced to take treacherous journeys through Mexico’s violent corridors.

Part of Biden’s new policy addresses that need. The administration will give up to 30,000 people from the four countries the chance to enter the U.S. legally, but only if they don’t pass through Mexico and can meet other requirements.

Since the new policy was announced, a senior Mexican official told me, the government has already noticed a drop in those migrants entering Mexico — and the United States.

  • Lisa Marie Presley, the singer-songwriter and the only child of Elvis Presley, died after a medical emergency and a brief hospitalization. She was 54.

  • Western tanks appear headed to Ukraine, breaking a taboo. With a new Russian offensive expected, officials see a need to shift the balance.

  • Exxon scientists predicted global warming decades ago with remarkable accuracy, a study found. The company publicly cast doubt on such research.

  • Prosecutors in Atlanta are building a case against the rapper Young Thug, saying his hip-hop label YSL was also a criminal street gang.

  • It’s not just you: There’s a shortage of eggs in parts of the U.S. A bird flu outbreak is a contributing factor.

The government’s unwillingness to regulate the airline industry has plunged air travel into endless crisis, William McGee argues.

Donald Trump’s political baggage is real. But he has a better chance of winning the presidency again than many think, Kellyanne Conway writes.

If anyone is going to tell the story of Pamela Anderson’s life, it’s going to be her, Jessica Bennett writes.

Master of misdirection: Bill Nighy doesn’t quite know how to talk about his work. He prefers self-deprecation instead.

In the garden: It’s OK to get carried away while shopping for flower seeds.

Modern Love: Monks can teach helpful lessons about romance.

A Times classic: Use a paper planner.

Advice from Wirecutter: Get reliable Wi-Fi.

Lives Lived: Paul Johnson, a prolific journalist, biographer and historian prized by conservatives, fashioned himself a man of letters in the great British tradition. He died at 94.

The N.C.A.A. needs Congress: It’s a new world in college athletics thanks to NIL opportunities. For the model to survive, it needs congressional help.

High schooler goes No. 1: Angel City FC selected the 18-year-old Alyssa Thompson with the No. 1 pick in the N.W.S.L. draft. Thompson has already seen playing time with the U.S. women’s national team and played in M.L.S. Next on a U-19 boys’ team.

Live-action adaptations of video games have disappointed critics and fans for decades. But “The Last of Us,” a new HBO show based on the game series of the same name, appears to have broken what’s known as the “video game curse.”

The show, which premieres on Sunday, follows two survivors as they travel through a world that has been largely destroyed by a fungal pandemic. The Times critic James Poniewozik writes that the series does not upend the plague-apocalypse genre. “But with its smidgen of hope and its rejection of nihilism,” he adds, “‘The Last of Us’ has a few key mutations that make it a variant of interest.”

Gamers seem pleased, too. At the gaming website IGN, Simon Cardy writes, “HBO’s ‘The Last of Us’ is a breathtaking adaptation of one of the most impactful stories told in video games and brilliantly brings Joel and Ellie’s journey to a whole new audience.”

Sumber: www.nytimes.com

No More Posts Available.

No more pages to load.