On the issue of immigration, this week we looked at the pandemic’s impact on illegal border crossings and those seeking asylum. Customs and Border Protection Acting Commissioner Mark Morgan and other leaders held a news conference at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base to recap the agency’s 2020 fiscal year that ended in September. Agents encountered 400,651 people attempting to enter the U.S. illegally, a 53% drop compared to its previous fiscal year.
Morgan also discussed the effects of Title 42 — a policy enacted by President Trump in March, shortly after the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic — which allows Border Patrol the ability to circumvent normal processing and return immigrants to Mexico within hours of their arrest. Since March, the agency has carried out nearly 200,000 Title 42 expulsions. The president said the policy curbs the potential spread of COVID-19 from immigrants, but critics accuse the Trump administration of using the pandemic as a red herring to deny immigrants due process.
Morgan discussed Title 42 with Lorraine Rivera, as well as ongoing construction on the new wall system along the southern border.