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Biden starts copying Trump's immigration playbook?

First, he announces he's building a wall and then this. I suppose he and Jill will be taking their next vacation at Mar-a-Lago?

Biden admin says it will start shipping illegal Venezuela migrants back to homeland

By Steven Nelson, NY Post

Published Oct. 5, 2023, 7:58 p.m. ET

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration said Thursday it will start sending Venezuelan migrants who illegally cross the US border back to their troubled homeland — despite prior threats failing to stem a surge in illegal crossings as the warnings went unenforced.

“In keeping with our commitment to enforce our immigration laws, and to continue strengthening the consequences for those who cross our border unlawfully, the United States is announcing today that it will resume direct repatriations of Venezuelan nationals who cross our border unlawfully and do not establish a legal basis to remain,” the Department of Homeland Security said in a press release.

The threatened deportations would be costly if actually conducted. Roughly 200,000 Venezuelans illegally crossed the southwest border in the most recent 11 months of Customs and Border Protection data, forming about 9% of all such transits.

The DHS announcement did not specify whether US government aircraft would be used, but one-way commercial flights, which sometimes are tapped for such repatriations, are extremely expensive due to low demand caused by safety and economic concerns in Venezuela. The cost of flights from border states to Caracas can reach up to thousands of dollars.

Large-scale deportations to Venezuela would likely spark a humanitarian outcry, as the country’s authoritarian socialist government has presided over intense internal repression of dissidents as years-long hyperinflation and one of the highest murder rates in the Western Hemisphere have sent citizens fleeing.

Homeland Security said the announcement “follows a decision by authorities from Venezuela to accept the return of Venezuelan nationals.”

The department also credited “high-level discussions yesterday in Mexico City between the United States, Mexico, Colombia, and Panama where Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas, and Homeland Security Advisor Liz Sherwood-Randall discussed ongoing coordinated efforts to address irregular migration in the Western Hemisphere.”

Adams warns of ‘nightmare’ in pursuing the ‘American dream’ in Mexico City

The threat was announced one day after the Biden administration waived 26 federal laws to expedite the construction of about 20 miles of new border wall in South Texas after former President Donald Trump’s signature project was halted on President Biden’s first day in office.

An ABC News poll last month found that Biden has just 23% approval from the public on his handling of immigration and the border, making it a major liability ahead of next year’s election. His leading critics include Democrats such as New York City Mayor Eric Adams.

“There is presently an acute and immediate need to construct physical barriers and roads in the vicinity of the border of the United States in order to prevent unlawful entries,” Mayorkas said Wednesday, though Biden contradicted him Thursday and said that walls were not effective and that he had to restart the project because Congress had approved funding for it in 2019.

Nearly a half-million Venezuelans have illegally crossed the southwest border since Biden took office — with the surge peaking at more than 34,000 arrests in April and more than 31,000 stops recorded in August, the most recent month for which data are available.

Aerial view of migrants holding flags of Venezuela and walking as part of a migrant caravan heading to the US through Mexico on July 15, 2023 in Ciudad Hidalgo, Mexico.


Homeland Security said the announcement “follows a decision by authorities from Venezuela to accept the return of Venezuelan nationals.”

Getty Images

Biden has previously threatened to deport Venezuelans who did not legally enter the US — before his administration allowed many to remain in the country to press their asylum claims.

Last month, Biden extended temporary protected status to an estimated 472,000 Venezuelan migrants who arrived in the US by July 31 of this year, which grants the cohort protection from deportation and the right to live and work legally in America due to their home country’s dysfunction.

The reprieve came despite prior Biden administration threats to turn away any Venezuelan who did not enter the country through legal processes.

Last month, Biden extended temporary protected status to an estimated 472,000 Venezuelan migrants who arrived in the US by July 31 of this year.

In October 2022, the Biden administration launched a special “parole” program allowing Venezuelans to enter the US through legal ports of entry such as airports to await review of their asylum claims — with a cap of 24,000 beneficiaries. Those who didn’t go through that process were warned they would be deported, and some were indeed turned away at the border.

The parole program was expanded in January to include citizens of Cuba, Haiti and Nicaragua — with up to a combined 30,000 migrants per month of those four nationalities allowed to enter the US to await asylum rulings if they passed background checks and had a US sponsor.

At the time, Biden claimed that residents of any of the four countries would be swiftly returned to Mexico if they crossed illegally — only for that threat to go unenforced, with more recent arrivals forming a large contingent of those released at the border, ultimately traveling to cities like New York, which has struggled to house them.

“Starting today, if you don’t apply through the legal process, you will not be eligible for this new parole program,” Biden said in January, adding, “If you attempt to cross into the United States unlawfully, you will not be allowed to enter.”

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