64,006 Apprehensions/Inadmissibles in August: Better, but Still Too High, Administration Says

By Susan Jones | September 10, 2019 | 5:40am EDT
Migrants, mostly from Central America, wait to board a van which will take them to a processing center, on May 16, 2019, in El Paso, Texas. (Photo by Paul Ratje/AFP/Getty Images)

(CNSNews.com) - In August, 50,693 people were apprehended between ports of entry on the Southwest Border, compared with 71,982 in the month of July and 94,904 in June.

Another 13,313 people were deemed inadmissible when they presented themselves at ports of entry on the Southwest Border last month. This compares with 10,073 in the month of July and 9,458 in June. Inadmissibles include people who are refused lawful entry into the United States; those seeking humanitarian protection; and people who withdraw applications for admission and return to their own countries in a short period of time.

The total 64,006 apprehensions/inadmissibles for the month of August is a 22-percent reduction from the 82,055 apprehensions/inadmissibles in July; a 38-percent reduction from the 104,362 in June; and a 56-percent reduction from the peak 144,255 in May.

(Graph from CBP website)

Acting Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Mark Morgan told a news conference on Monday that although the numbers are coming down, thanks to "historic agreements and policies put in place by this administration," the numbers are still too high.

He said the American people should be frustrated that Congress won't do its job, while "judicial activism" in the courts blocks every attempt by the Trump administration to stop or slow the illegal flows of foreigners across the southwest border.

"This Congress, I've talked to multiple people on the Hill. I personally told them is what they need to do is to pass meaningful legislation that would end 85 percent of this crisis. I think you could put it on one piece of paper and do it in half an hour, and they refuse to do so. That is what we should frustrate the American people," Morgan said.

While Congress ignores the problem, President Trump is moving ahead with his border wall, Morgan said:

"Together with the United States Army Corps of Engineers, CBP has constructed more than 65 miles of new border wall, and it's more than a border wall; it's a border wall system. And now that we have the Secretary of Defense authority to use...an additional $3.6 billion, we are hoping to build between 450 to 500 new miles of border by the end of 2020.

Morgan said the wall is not a "vanity project." He described it as "an integral part of the multi-layer strategy" to secure the border.

"And let me summarize by reiterating that we are absolutely encouraged by the downward trend of apprehension numbers, but we know these numbers could always spike upwards; history has shown that we have seen it happen in the past. We cannot rely solely on the government of Mexico or Central American partners to solve the pull factors created by our broken system," Morgan said.

"Unless the laws change, these numbers will rise again next year just as we have seen in the past. We will again face the same kind of crisis we have for way too long. Congress must absolutely act to pass meaningful legislation to address the loopholes in our current system if we are going to have a durable, lasting solution to this crisis."

Last month, a federal judge in San Francisco blocked a new Trump administration policy requiring asylum-seekers to apply for asylum in countries they pass through on their way to the U.S., such as Mexico or Guatemala.

Morgan, asked for his reaction to that ruling, said he's "frustrated." "The unprecedented judicial activism that we have experienced every time that this administration comes up with what we believe is a legal rule or policy that we really believe that will address this crisis, we end up getting enjoined. It's very, very frustrating but we just want to keep going."

Morgan said President Trump's son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner is now working on a "comprehensive plan" that hopefully will get traction. "It would be great to be able to put something together that is meaningful that we could get bipartisan support to actually end this crisis. I applaud his efforts. Absolutely," Morgan said.



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