There May Be a Border 'Crisis' as Pandemic-Era Rule Expires

Influx of asylum-seekers is expected at US-Mexico border
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted May 11, 2023 2:00 AM CDT
There Could Be a 'Crisis' at Border When Title 42 Expires Tonight
Migrants wait under scorching sun adjacent to the border fence to enter into El Paso, Texas, Wednesday, May 10, 2023.   (AP Photo/Andres Leighton)

Media outlets are warning of an impending "border crisis" (and the president himself is predicting some "chaos") as Title 42, the pandemic-era border policy that allowed officials to quickly expel migrants to Mexico, comes to an end. The BBC reports that's happening at 11:59pm Eastern time Thursday, and takes a look at El Paso, Texas, specifically in the run-up to that time: The city's mayor says that 10,000 migrants were "lined up at the border, waiting to come in," as record numbers of migrants are apprehended at the US-Mexico border. In the city, scores of migrants the outlet describes as "confused" about the coming rule changes are camping out on the streets. The AP reports there are "huge" numbers of migrants waiting at other border crossings as well.

The Biden administration plans to deny asylum to those seeking it if they haven't first applied online or seeking protection in a country they came through, and the changes to border policy are meant to both crack down on illegal crossings and also create new pathways for legal immigration. While some migrants were trying to cross before Title 42 expires, fearing the crackdown will make it more difficult to stay in the US after the new rule takes effect, more asylum-seekers are expected after the rule change. Either way, as the White House sent 1,500 active-duty troops to the border in advance of the rule change, Politico reports many took it as a sign the administration isn't prepared for the influx of migrants. "We are preparing for the unknown," El Paso's mayor says, per CNN. For more, Politico's explainer is helpful. (More US-Mexico border stories.)

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