During his 2016 campaign, President Trump made fixing the illegal immigration debacle in this country one of his top priorities. Among other initiatives, he promised to deport criminal illegal aliens and build a border wall with Mexico.
Thus far, Trump’s tough talk on immigration is yielding results. According to a Department of Homeland Security report released on December 5, 2017, border arrests along the United States-Mexico border plunged to the lowest level since 1971 during the 2017 fiscal year.
According to The Blaze, U.S. Border Patrol agents arrested 310,531 individuals in 2017, as opposed to 415,816 people in 2016 — a 23.7 percent decline. Along the Southwest border, 303,916 apprehensions were made in 2017 while 408,970 arrests took place in 2016. Of those who were arrested along the Southwest border, 42 percent came from Mexico. The other 58 percent originated from Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador.
The diminished border arrests are directly attributable to Trump’s uncommonly strong stance on illegal immigration. Fearing potential apprehension, many would-be illegal aliens are deciding to remain in their own countries.
While overall border arrests declined in 2017, apprehensions of gang members increased by 83 percent. These arrests included members of the violent MS-13 international gang. Most of the members of this vicious gang hail from Central America. A whopping 92 percent of the individuals arrested by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents possessed criminal convictions.
“We have clearly seen the successful results of the president’s commitment to supporting the frontline officers and agents of (the Department of Homeland Security) as they enforce the law and secure our borders,” acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke said.
Besides arresting more gang members, ICE instigated more interior removals in 2017 than 2016. Interior removals involve people being deported after being apprehended away from the border. They increased a sizable 25 percent from 65,332 to 81,603. Almost immediately after taking office, Trump issued an executive order regarding border security and immigration enforcement improvements. In the comprehensive order, the president authorized agents to apprehend all undocumented aliens when they come across the border instead of only those accused of violent or serious crimes.
Trump’s immigration improvements are taking place despite a lack of support from members of Congress, particularly Democrats. On December 6, 2017 at a cabinet meeting at the White House, Trump warned reporters that a government shutdown might occur due to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer’s insistence that any budget agreement include amnesty for DACA immigrants.
During his remarks, the President said, “The Democrats are really looking at something that is very dangerous for our country…they are looking at shutting down…they want to have illegal immigrants pouring into our country, bring with them crime, tremendous amounts of drugs.”
Democrats desperately desire for Congress to grant amnesty to DACA aliens as part of a year-end deal to fund the government. This immigration policy was enacted by the Obama administration in 2012, and overturned by Trump earlier this year. It permitted certain people who entered the United States when they were minors, and who either came or stayed in the United States illegally, to remain in the country and obtain a work permit.
On December 7, 2017, both houses of Congress passed stopgap legislation in order to prevent a partial shutdown of the government before the looming midnight December 8, 2017 deadline. The bill, also referred to as a continuing resolution, is supposed to sustain federal agencies’ ability to run for two more weeks until December 22, 2017. After the stopgap legislation passed, Trump met with Congressional Leaders Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Republican – Kentucky, House Speaker Paul Ryan, Republican – Wisconsin, Schumer, and Pelosi at the White House to talk about a strategy avoid a government shutdown after the stopgap expires.
According to Fox News, Pelosi informed reporters that lawmakers won’t leave without a deal to help immigrants who came to the U.S. illegally as children and are enrolled in the DACA program.
Despite his critics’ views, Trump isn’t against all forms of immigration. Like millions of Americans, he is simply opposed to immigrants unlawfully entering the United States on their own terms. At the Cabinet meeting, he stated, “We want to have a great, beautiful, crime-free country, and we want people to come into our country, but we want them to come on our basis.”
~ Conservative Zone