Aside from the pandemic, arguably the hottest topic of debate in 2021 was immigration. The border crisis spiraled out of control according to many authorities, with arrest numbers hitting record highs.
DHS officials and southern state lawmakers called out the Biden administration for ignoring the collapsing border. Many reports said that in fact, the border was “broken” in several areas.
Now, for the first time in a decade, the President hasn’t released the ICE report.
Critics say this is because it will reflect badly on the administration, as the numbers aren’t likely to be positive. And perhaps this is why the report hasn’t been released yet.
Given the skyrocketing encounter and arrest numbers released in 2021, and lower deportations, it seems obvious that the annual ICE report is bound to contain plenty of damaging information.
According to the Washington Free Beacon, the data concerning ICE’s operations and investigations in the fiscal year has been released at the end of the calendar year since 2011.
But we still don’t have it from the Biden administration. And one former ICE official says this is “unprecedented,” and not producing the report “is a slap in the face to the hard-working career officials.”
Jon Feere, who is now part of the Center for Immigration Studies, added that “it’s clearly a political effort aimed at hiding the impact of the Biden administration’s policies.”
Director of Policy Studies at the Center, Jessica Vaughan, also told Fox News:
I think they don’t want to be seen issuing a report that no matter how they spin it points to a dramatic drop in enforcement of immigration laws at the same time there’s this festering crisis at the border.
It will show that they’re not trying to deter or control illegal immigration, they’re just trying to manage it, and they’ve seen now that this is not a good message for voters to be getting at this time – this is going to be unpopular.
ICE confirmed that there’s no delay on their side, that the report is in “final review” and will be released at the end of January.
However, the Biden administration appears to be in no rush to provide this data to the American public. And that might be attributable to the President’s policies, as Feere suggested.
In contrast to the Donald Trump administration, everything is different now in regards to the border and ICE operations.
For example, Biden’s team quickly imposed new restrictions on ICE officers, which forced them to target only “aggravated felons, recent border crossers and national security threats.”
This meant that just about all other undocumented migrants weren’t pursued. And only recently did the Supreme Court order the reinstatement of Trump’s Remain in Mexico policy.
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Former acting ICE Director Thomas Homan further slammed the administration:
A year of historic illegal immigration at the border, ICE has the lowest number of arrests, removals in the agency, if that doesn’t speak for itself about what the administration is doing.
Feere also said he expects a “narrower report” that isn’t quite as in-depth as expected. This would be to “manipulate” the data and “put the best light possibly on their horrifically dangerous policies.”
He finished by saying that Biden’s refusal to publish the report is an “admission.” Basically, it means they’re saying their approach to the border just doesn’t work.
This is a common accusation and claim, made especially by right-wing politicians, but also by millions of frustrated Americans. Biden’s ultra-lax policies on enforcement have simply resulted in alarming migration numbers.