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Biden Ponders 'Drastic' Measures To Cut Illegal Mexican Border Crossing

Top U.S. officials are considering drastic measures — including barring some asylum seekers and surging prosecutions of illegal border crossings — in preparation for an end to the pandemic-era Title 42 border policy, Axios reports. Some ideas under serious consideration echo controversial policies from the Trump administration. Others could expand legal avenues for migrants and asylum seekers in the region to enter the U.S. That some of these approaches are being considered at the government's highest levels reflects the Biden administration's desperation to get a handle on unprecedented efforts to cross the U.S.-Mexico border.

A federal judge is forcing border officials to stop using Title 42 on Dec. 21. The Trump-era policy cites public health concerns to allow Border Patrol to expel migrants at the border without the chance for asylum. U.S. officials anticipate the loss of the tool and the narrative that there are "open borders" will lead to a jump in the already-high number of border crossings. Actions to expand legal pathways for migrants and asylum seekers and crack down on people who do not enter the U.S. at legal entry points were discussed at a Cabinet-head level meeting on Monday. The planning comes as House Republicans gear up for investigations into the administration's handling of the border — and a possible impeachment of DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.

One Biden official said that, "Despite all the progress we’ve made, we’re continuing to work within the constraints of a decades-old broken immigration system that Republican officials refuse to allow us to fix."


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