Trump Wants to Speed Up Asylum Adjudications and Impose Fees

By Susan Jones | April 30, 2019 | 6:38am EDT
Central American migrants make their way toward the United States on January 20, 2019 in Huixtla, Mexico. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)

( - President Donald Trump on Monday announced that his latest plan to secure the border and "restore integrity" to the immigration system focuses on asylum-seekers.

In a presidential memorandum, President Trump directed Attorney General William Barr and Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan to do the following:

-- Propose regulations to ensure that all asylum applications adjudicated in immigration court are finalized within 180 days. (Many of the hundreds of thousands of people claiming asylum at the Southwest border are coming to the United States for economic opportunity, which is not grounds for asylum. The huge influx has produced an immigration backlog of some 800,000 cases.)

-- Propose regulations setting a fee for an asylum application, not to exceed the costs of adjudicating the application; and impose a fee for work permits for the period that the asylum claim is pending.

-- Propose regulations to bar asylum seekers who entered the country illegally from receiving work permits until they receive the court's permission to stay here; and to ensure immediate revocation of work permits for aliens who are denied asylum or become subject to a final order of removal.

The memo also directs the Homeland Security Secretary to "reprioritize the assignment of immigration officers," as the Secretary deems necessary, to improve adjudications of credible and reasonable fear claims; to strengthen the enforcement of the immigration laws; and to ensure compliance with the law by those aliens who have final orders of removal.

Trump tweeted about his latest attempt to stem the mass influx of foreigners, mostly Central Americans, who are flowing over the border in numbers not seen for years -- more than 100,000 inadmissible aliens encountered in March alone.

“If the Democrats don’t give us the votes to change our weak, ineffective and dangerous Immigration Laws, we must fight hard for these votes in the 2020 Election!” Trump tweeted on Monday.

In a second tweet, he wrote: “The Coyotes and Drug Cartels are in total control of the Mexico side of the Southern Border. They have labs nearby where they make drugs to sell into the U.S. Mexico, one of the most dangerous country’s in the world, must eradicate this problem now. Also, stop the MARCH to U.S.”

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