DHS Secretary Mayorkas visits US-Mexico border ahead of scheduled Title 42 suspension

The decades-old law to limit immigration during a public health crisis is set to end May 23

Updated: May 18, 2022 - 2:17pm

 

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas visited the U.S.-Mexico border on Tuesday, days before President Biden’s administration plans to end Title 42 – a decades-old federal law activated during the pandemic to limit immigration into the country.

Mayorkas visited several locations in the Rio Grande Valley that are considered popular crossing areas for migrants, including the McAllen Station, Anzalduas Park, and Guerra Gap.

Border Patrol officials in the sector also briefed Mayorkas on the conditions during the seasonal migration surge and an expected spike after Title 42 enforcement ends Monday, according to Fox News.

However, the future of title 42 is still uncertain. Twenty-four states, including Arizona, Missouri, and Louisiana, filed a lawsuit last month against the reversal of the policy, citing the costs that such a move could bring to the states.

The complaint cites “increased health care costs for aliens infected with COVID-19 and the cost of increased illegal immigration caused by the Termination Order and the presence of much greater numbers of paroled aliens with non-meritorious asylum claims who were induced to enter the United States because of the Termination Order.”

On Friday, Judge Robert Summerhays, of the Western District of Louisiana, heard oral arguments in a preliminary injunction.
The judge is expected to rule in favor of the 24 states to keep the policy in effect during the litigation.

In addition, some Senate Democrats have also publicly expressed concerns about the Biden administration plan to end Title 42 without a more definitive plan to address the implications.

On Tuesday, Mayorkas told CNN that the U.S. has “not seen a significant decrease” in individuals attempting to cross the border despite the administration’s efforts to stop migration.

“We’re seeing about a seven-day average of over 7,500 people, so we have not seen a significant decrease in the flows,” he said.

In April alone, border officials intercepted more than 324,088 undocumented migrants attempting to cross the border, overtaking March’s 22-year high of 221,000, according to Customs and Border Protection data.