In the latest twist of negotiations over the national supplemental package, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer finds himself caught in the crossfire between progressives and Republicans. The ongoing talks, which include White House officials, DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, and bipartisan senators, have triggered alarm among Democrats who fear excessive concessions to Republican demands for stringent border policies.
According to reports from Fox News, Senator Bob Menendez minced no words, cautioning Schumer against covertly embracing “Trumpian policies” that could worsen border challenges. Senator Alex Padilla echoed these concerns, emphasizing the need for a careful evaluation of the potential consequences associated with the proposed provisions.
Former House Rep. Beto O’Rourke, now vying for Texas governorship, delivered a scathing critique, warning that adopting “failed Trump immigration policies” might lead to increased crossings, higher migrant casualties, and dampened enthusiasm among progressive voters. Schumer responded by indicating a willingness to reshape the supplemental package, but the absence of specific details raised apprehensions among Democratic senators.
Senator Cory Booker expressed discomfort about the uncertain party in charge of enforcing the new policies post-2024. Talks intensified as Republicans linked additional Ukraine aid to strict border security measures. Senator James Lankford outlined basic Republican demands, including immediate screenings for asylum processing, expanded detention beds, and strengthened border patrol.
Rumors abound that the administration is contemplating a nationwide expansion of expedited removal and the mandatory detention of select migrants during claim consideration. As negotiations heat up, the Senate’s extended holiday recess reflects the urgency surrounding a vote on the supplemental package next week. Against this backdrop, migrant encounters at the southern border soared past 10,000 in a single day, injecting a sense of immediacy into the ongoing deliberations on border policy.
Canadian-U.S. border illegal crossings up 240% over previous year
The vulnerability of the northern border of the United States is being weaponized in the war on illegal migration. 2023 saw a 240% increase of individuals apprehended from just one year prior. Not only is the border with Canada significantly longer than its border with Mexico, but its ports of entry are often understaffed while the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is forced to prioritize the southern surge.
According to recent data from U.S. Customs and Border Protection, in 2023 authorities halted over 12,000 migrants attempting illegal crossings at the Canadian border. The number is a 240% increase from the preceding year when 3,579 individuals were apprehended.
ADN America reports that approximately 70% of the illegal crossings took place along a 295-mile stretch along the northern New York, Vermont, and New Hampshire border called the Swanton Sector.
Chief patrol agent for the sector, Robert Garcia, posted on social media that the 3,100 individuals apprehended were from 55 different countries.
Garcia wrote “the record-breaking surge of illegal entries from Canada continues in Swanton Sector” and he specifically mentioned that the arrest of 10 Bangladeshi citizens was prompted by a citizen’s report in Champlain, New York.
Surprisingly, ADN reports:
A significant number of those engaging in illegal crossings are Mexicans who exploit the opportunity to fly to Canada without a visa, also avoiding the presence of cartels in their home countries.
Experts suggest that migrants can purchase a $350 one-way plane ticket from Mexico City or Cancun to Montreal or Toronto. This route is perceived as offering a lower likelihood of being turned away compared to those crossing the southern border.
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