Illegal immigration remains stubbornly high despite Biden's attempts to paint it as decreasing

Last month, CBP processed 41,400 people who had made appointments through the CBP One app, according to officials. 

Published: May 19, 2024 9:56pm

The Biden administration is touting a decrease in nationwide border encounters, but the numbers are still significantly higher than those under the Trump administration, according to data from U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Officials reported nearly a quarter of a million illegal immigrant encounters for April 2024, bringing the total number of encounters to more than 1.9 million this fiscal year. With five months left in fiscal year 2024, the current number of encounters is already significantly higher than any complete fiscal year under former President Donald Trump.

Mark Morgan, former Customs and Border Protection acting commissioner, told Just the News, that the Biden administration is "playing the shell game" with illegal immigration statistics. 

"We have executed the largest surge of removals and disruptive activities against human smuggling networks in the past decade. As a result of this increased enforcement, southwest border encounters have not increased, bucking previous trends," acting Border Patrol Commissioner Troy Miller said last week.

Although the number of encounters last month – 247,837 – is fewer than the number reported in April 2023 or April 2022, Morgan said last month's numbers are "still catastrophic" and the comparison should be made to the number of encounters under Trump.

For example, from October 2022 through February 2023, Trump's final fiscal year before he instituted Title 42, an emergency health order preventing immigration due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there were 281,998 encounters nationwide. During that same time period this fiscal year, encounters rose by nearly 430% to more than 1.4 million.

The total number of migrant encounters for last month included people processed through the CBP One app and other parole systems, Morgan said.

Officials processed 41,000 people last month through the CBP One app, which allows people attempting to enter the U.S. to wait in Mexico until they have an appointment at a set time.

The people processed through CBP One and parole would still otherwise be inadmissible to the U.S., but they were processed in this manner "to avoid bad political optics, and to reverse and to reduce those that were illegally entering in between the ports of entry," Morgan said.

In another example of this, CBP stated that last month there were "128,900 encounters between ports of entry along the southwest border," which is 6% lower than in March 2024 and 30% lower than in April 2023. However, this statistic omits how more people are going to actual ports of entry for processing.

Additionally, nearly 180,000 people came to the Southwest border alone last month, which is nearly 6,000 people a day. Notably, Obama administration Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson previously said that 1,000 apprehensions a day would overwhelm the migration system.

April's numbers do not include the number of "gotaways," or illegal immigrants who evaded Border Patrol. Last fiscal year alone, more than 670,000 gotaways entered the U.S., more than any previous recorded year dating back to 2010. With an average of more than 55,000 gotaways a month last year, there are no signs it would slow down. 

Illegal immigration is a hot topic ahead of the election this fall, and a February Gallup poll said that it was the "first time immigration has been the single most important problem [for voters] since 2019."

Follow Madeleine Hubbard on X or Instagram.

Unlock unlimited access

  • No Ads Within Stories
  • No Autoplay Videos
  • VIP access to exclusive Just the News newsmaker events hosted by John Solomon and his team.
  • Support the investigative reporting and honest news presentation you've come to enjoy from Just the News.
  • Just the News Spotlight

    Support Just the News