In September, U.S. immigration officers captured a near-record number of migrants who had crossed the southern border illegally, putting the Biden administration’s migration strategy to the test. According to internal agency figures, Border Patrol agents apprehended nearly 140,000 undocumented migrants in the first 20 days of September. That works out to about 6,900 each day. The daily average in July was 4,300.
Forecasts indicate that the Border Patrol will apprehend over 210,000 migrants this month, the largest monthly total since December and May 2022, when the agency knew over 220,000 migrants in each of those months. More than 7,000 migrants were detained daily by Border Patrol agents during those record-breaking months, a number that September’s average comes very near to.
On Wednesday, the Border Patrol processed over 9,000 migrants, the highest daily apprehension number since May.
Asylum seekers in Mexico can make an appointment to enter the United States through a government phone app called CBP One, and U.S. border authorities have been processing around 1,500 people per day at official ports of entry under this Biden administration mechanism.
The increase in undocumented border crossings is a significant defeat for the Biden administration’s web of measures designed to reduce migration to the United States. A record number of migrants have been apprehended by the Border Patrol over the past two and a half years, with 2.2 million being arrested in fiscal year 2022 and a similar number expected to be apprehended by the conclusion of fiscal year 2023, which finishes at the end of this month.
After the last Title 42 public health expulsions were made in May, the Biden administration implemented measures to prevent illegal entry. The plan called for diverting the monthly flow of tens of thousands of migrants entering the United States illegally to legal migration initiatives, such as the app-powered process.
The increased migration has put pressure on state and local governments. In recent months, Border Patrol agents in some parts of Arizona and southern California have been compelled to release migrants into communities due to facility overcrowding.
The government has pledged to increase deportations of migrants, as their rhetoric toward the migrants signals that they are welcomed.