By Mark Glennon, founder of WirePoints
“I’ve also directed my team to make a historic increase in the number of refugees admitted from Latin America — people fleeing violence and persecution who simply want their kids to have a better life.”
Make no mistake: Recent comments by Pres. Joe Biden and Gov. JB Pritzker seemingly calling for tighter border security are a ruse. No policy change has tightened the border. Nobody should expect any change from Biden’s true policy, stated above, or that the State of Illinois or City of Chicago will cross him on that policy.
Illegal aliens just since 2021 total more than individual populations of 38 states. Illegal border crossings set another record in September and now top 8 million since Biden took office.
Double talk is all we are getting from those in power. They care not that an overwhelming number of Americans – 66% – want border enforcement. That includes 61% of Democrats who say they want stronger law enforcement at the border, and two-thirds of Latino voters (65%).
There’s an “acute and immediate need” for a border wall in the Rio Grande Valley, said Biden’s Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas, Oct. 4. Yet Biden said “No” when asked the next day if a border wall was effective in halting illegal immigration, and the supposed construction turned out to be for just 20 miles of wall.
Pritzker claimed success from his request last month for federal help when the Department of Homeland Security said it will speed up the processing of work authorizations for asylum seekers. But the federal government, also with Pritzker’s support, will increase the maximum validity period for work permits to five years for certain noncitizens, including those admitted as refugees or granted asylum, those who have been granted withholding of removal, and applicants for asylum.
DHS will also extend Temporary Protected Status for 18 months to Venezuelan migrants who were living in the U.S. on or before July 31. Illinois and Chicago leaders “rejoiced at the news,” as the Chicago Tribune reported.
In other words, what is given with one hand is taken away with the other.
To Pritzker, border security is just a bargaining chip to get a comprehensive immigration reform, his version of which would no doubt mean normalization and voting rights for those here. On the national broadcast Face the Nation earlier this month, he said,
The House of Representatives is opposed to any kind of comprehensive immigration reform. It seems like now is the moment to talk about border security and immigration reform. We want immigrants in the United States, we also want border security, it seems like there’s a compromise there that can occur.
The hell with that. Enforce the border now. No conditions.
Meanwhile, Chicago buckles under the cost of the mere 18,000 asylum seekers bused to the city from Texas. That’s a tiny fraction of the number expected from the millions crossing the border.
Mayor Brandon Johnson shamelessly hid the problem in his new budget proposal last week. The city will budget just $150 million to cover the cost of housing, feeding and caring for those sent to Chicago in 2024, even though that is less than half of what the city will have spent to care for Chicago’s newest arrivals through the end of 2023. Johnson hasn’t even attempted the pretense of wanting illegal immigration fixed.
“Sanctuary” protection and benefit policies remain in place for Illinois and Chicago, drawing more and more arrivals. No effort is afoot to change any of that. Medicaid benefits for migrants alone are projected to cost the State of Illinois over $1 billion this year, but nobody truly knows since nobody knows how many migrants will arrive.
Nor does anybody have a good estimate of how many of the incoming are criminals or even terrorists. DHS has reported a spike in the number of individuals with criminal convictions or that are listed on the terror watchlist attempting to enter the United States illegally through its borders. A new record.
But that’s just those who are caught. “Gotaways” – those never encountered by a border agent, who probably include the more sophisticated criminals or terrorists — probably number 1.6 million since January 2001.
U.S. sheriffs are therefore screaming for border enforcement. The American Sheriff Alliance is calling on elected officials “at every level of government to speak out and draw attention to the need of making proper reforms to these extreme challenges.” From their statement last week:
With hundreds of violent criminals entering communities every day around the country as well as the flow of illicit narcotics poisoning our citizens, the Alliance is demanding the rule of law in this country be followed and that all available sanctions and statutes be used to help alleviate the pressure the men and women of law enforcement are facing during this unprecedented period in our nation’s history.
Compassion is certainly needed for the honest work-seekers and families among the migrants. My colleagues will have a report on that shortly based on their visit to migrant encampments. But the border must be enforced. It’s that or the end of the nation.
“This unprecedented period in our nation’s history” – that’s the phrase used by the American Sheriff’s Association.
It’s an understatement. When has any nation destroyed itself in plain view with the full support of its elected government?