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October 2022, Volume 28, Number 4

Migrant Buses

Over 7,000 migrants a day entered the US and applied for asylum in September 2022, bringing total encounters or apprehensions just inside the Mexico-US border to over 2.2 million for FY22.

The Biden administration allowed over a million migrants seeking asylum to enter the US in its first 18 months. Another 1.7 million migrants were returned to Mexico under Title 42, including some who were returned multiple times.

Most of the asylum seekers released into the US wait for several years until their cases are heard by immigration judges. Asylum applicants can receive work permits after 150 days as they wait for their cases to be heard, and their access to housing and support services vary by state.

The Republican governors of Texas and Arizona sent busloads of mostly Venezuelan asylum seekers to Chicago, New York City and Washington DC during the summer and fall of 2022. Some of the Venezuelans bussed to these cities traveled to friends and relatives around the US, but hundreds entered homeless shelters that were soon overcrowded. The US cannot return Venezuelans to Venezuela.

The Texas National Guard and the state police began to apprehend unauthorized migrants and return them to ports of entry in July 2022, setting up a clash with the federal government over illegal immigration. Managing migration is a federal responsibility, and the USSC has overturned some state laws that sought to deal with unauthorized migrants, such as an Arizona law in 2012.

The US has a registry program that allows unauthorized foreigners who have been living in the US since January 1, 1972 to become legal immigrants. HR 8433, introduced in July 2022, would replace the 1972 date with a rolling seven-year registry date, so that unauthorized foreigners in the US at least seven years could adjust their status. The registry date would roll forward each year, creating a continuous legalization program.

If Republicans win control of the House in November 2022 elections, they are likely to investigate unauthorized migration over the Mexico-US border. The House Oversight Committee would be led by Rep James Comer (R-KY), who indicated he would also investigate the activities of Hunter Biden and the origins of the covid virus.

The great replacement theory argues that some governing elites want to replace current populations with immigrants who have different cultures and values. French author Renaud Camus in 2011 asserted that European elites wanted to replace white Christians with non-white Muslims, while Enoch Powell in a 1968 Rivers of Blood speech predicted race riots in the UK due to immigration. Jean Raspail’s 1973 Camp of the Saints novel portrayed third-world immigrants overwhelming France.

Great replacement theory appeared in several Republican campaigns in 2022, including in Blake Masters bid to be the Republican nominee for Senate in Arizona. Masters, supported by billionaire Peter Thiel, argues that unauthorized migration into the US is a Democratic policy aimed at reducing the power of US-born voters via amnesty; he vows to “put Americans first.”

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