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Joe Biden’s Immigration Challenge


Guillermo Arias/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images



After inaugurating the president's seat at the White House, Joe Biden signed an executive action to halt the construction of Donald Trump's controversial border wall, but now he has a much more significant obstacle to solve.


In the past few weeks, hundreds to thousands of immigrants from Mexico seek to enter the United States, hoping that the new administration will welcome them with an open arm. The illegal border crossing is believed to be inclining and could be the highest in the two decades. Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas defended Joe Biden's immigration strategy, stating that the United States' southern border is closed'. The administration faces criticism over the number of immigrants seeking asylum.


For President Joe Biden, this poses a considerable challenge. Immigration for years has been an issue in American politics and one that has no solution. Republicans on the right are on a rampage, blaming Biden's policy as he got rid of Trump's policies prematurely and without a backup system in the plan.

Last week, on his return from Camp David, President Joe Biden told briefly that 'a lot more could be done' regarding immigration. "We're in the process of doing it now, including making sure that we reestablish what existed before [Trump], which was that they can stay in place and make their case from their home country," Biden said. The president also said he would travel to the border "at some point."


Biden's administration can not change the current circumstances pilling on the southern border in a short time. His administrations at times have sounded like someone who is too shy to kick out the illegal gate- crashers. "We are not saying, 'Don't come. We are saying 'Don't come now", was the unreasonably mild message to potential migrants from the secretary of homeland security, Alejandro Mayorkas. Senator Alex Padilla, Democrat of California, is impatient to take on the kind of significant immigration overhaul that has bedeviled Congress for decades.


Beyond any measures, President Biden needs to work on the asylum process. As the number of asylum cases in the United States rose, judges decided 67,406 asylum cases in past years, nearly two-and-a-half times the number from five years ago when judges decided 19,779 asylum cases. Many migrants are allowed to stay as their cases are in court. During the presidential debate, Donald Trump argued that "these migrants do not appear in courts". Therefore, a sustainable immigration policy for the future must involve creating more ways for immigrants to enter America legally. President Biden would also sensibly like to extend citizenship to undocumented immigrants living in America and the "dreamers" who arrived there as children.

-Kabir Kalia

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