This story was first published by The Dark Wire Investigation Foundation.
The Biden administration announced Friday that it will be allowing tens of thousands of asylum-seekers into the United States while they wait for their next immigration court hearings.
According to reports, an estimated 25,000 asylum-seekers in Mexico with active cases will be allowed in the U.S. on Feb. 19.
The Department of Homeland Security, partnering with international organizations in Mexico, will choose the most vulnerable candidates, test them for COVID-19, and bring them into the U.S.
Homeland Security said they will begin processing up to 300 people per day, and will increase the numbers overtime.
President Joe Biden announced once he took office that asylum-seekers would no longer be subject to the “Remain in Mexico” policy, which allowed U.S. border officers to return non-Mexican asylum seekers to Mexico as their claims were tried in U.S. immigration courts.
“As President Biden has made clear, the U.S. government is committed to rebuilding a safe, orderly, and humane immigration system,” said Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas. “This latest action is another step in our commitment to reform immigration policies that do not align with our nation’s values.”
According to DHS, more people are crossing the border illegally since Biden took office.
Raul Ortiz, deputy chief of the Border Patrol, told the Associated Press Tuesday that more than 3,000 people had been stopped crossing the border illegally in each of the previous 10 days, compared to a daily average of 2,426 in January.
Follow Annaliese Levy on Twitter @AnnalieseLevy
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Rep. Patrick McHenry Announces Retirement, Adding to Congressional Exodus
Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C., has declared that he will not seek re-election, becoming the latest in a growing list of lawmakers departing from Congress. McHenry, a close ally of former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, stated that he believes “there is a season for everything,” signaling the end of his tenure in the House. Having served since 2005, McHenry is the 37th member of Congress to announce they won’t seek re-election in 2024.
In a statement, McHenry reflected on the significance of the House of Representatives in the American political landscape, calling it the “center of our American republic.” He acknowledged the concerns about the future of the institution due to multiple departures but expressed confidence that new leaders would emerge and guide the House through its next phase.
The departure of McHenry and others comes against the backdrop of political shifts and challenges within the Republican Party. The GOP has faced setbacks in recent elections, including fallout from the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.
Internal strife and disagreements, exemplified by the rebellion against McCarthy, have characterized the party’s dynamics. The GOP’s approval rating stands at 30%, with a disapproval rating of 66%, reflecting the challenges and divisions within the party.
As McHenry steps aside, questions loom over the fate of open seats in the upcoming election. The nonpartisan Cook Political Report identifies five open House seats as potential Democrat pickup opportunities, while none are listed for the GOP. The departures raise concerns about the party’s unity and ability to navigate the evolving political landscape.
With a total of 20 departing Democratic legislators and 10 Republicans, the changing composition of Congress adds complexity to the political dynamics leading up to the 2024 elections. As McHenry emphasizes a hopeful view of the House’s future, the evolving political landscape will determine the impact of these departures on the balance of power in Congress.
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