Illegal immigration starting to hit home for US cities

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Big-city Democratic mayors such as New York’s Eric Adams and DC’s Muriel Bowser have realized, suddenly, that illegal immigrants are straining their social safety nets.

They’re accusing Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, but there’s only one person to blame: President Biden.

It was only ever the Biden government that did this, starting on inauguration day 2021, with radical policies gutting detention and deportation. They unleashed a mass migration crisis far beyond anything in the American experience, one that has utterly smashed every single illegal immigration record on the books.

As things stand, well over 2 million border crossers have fanned out across America. Millions more will be granted admittance in the next two years if the administration stays this course. By the end of Biden’s term, at this rate, the number of people let in at the border will probably exceed 6 million.

Where did these mayors think all these people were going after Border Patrol processes and releases them into the interior on an honor system to report one day to their local ICE office?

Let me give you an idea. From those hectic first early days of the crisis to the present, as hundreds of thousands a month were storming over to get their quick Biden free passage in, I was there to observe a human conveyor belt system roar to life all over Texas. All day and often all night in Texas and in other border states, it swiftly moves thousands every day through a day or two of Border Patrol processing and then, with the help of local nonprofits, onto charter and commercial buses and planes that take them to just about every city in the nation.

The first time I saw it happening, in March 2021, the immigrants on buses or waiting in Texas bus stations said they were going to: New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Florida, Tennessee, Indiana, Michigan, North Carolina, Georgia, and Kentucky.

As of today nearly 2 million border crossers entered America.
Reuters/Adrees Latif

The last time I visited the conveyor belt in Del Rio was in May 2022. The only thing that changed was that volumes had become massive. All day, every day, full Border Patrol buses were pulling up to the nonprofit facility, right behind Greyhound buses taking others to cities across the country, and offloading them to get onto commercial buses. They told me they were going to: New Jersey, New York State, Florida, Oregon, Ohio, Kansas, Missouri, Nevada, Utah, California, Minnesota, Wyoming, North Carolina, and Colorado.

Most were released on a presumption that they’ll eventually apply for asylum; the Biden government stopped long ago even pretending to follow lawful processes. It’s an honor system now. But all statistics show that most will either never actually apply or will be declined. None will leave after their legal permission slips expire, and the Biden administration has ended deportation as America has always known it. Unless they are terrorists or serial killers, these illegal immigrants will not be deported.

That means America’s cities are to be stuck with literally millions of people who are not authorized to work and support themselves. So big city mayors who act like they had no idea this was going on, get a clue. Buck up. Stop casting blame on some Republican governor far away. And pull out your city’s wallet. This has only just begun.

Todd Bensman is National Security Fellow at the Center for Immigration Studies and author of the forthcoming “Overrun: The Greatest Border Crisis in U.S. History, Explained.”

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