WASHINGTON (NewsNation Now) — The Biden administration has made it clear that they plan to reverse many of former President Donald Trump’s immigration policies. That starts, they say, with possibly allowing separated immigrant families to stay in the United States.
President Joe Biden met virtually with Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Monday, the same day Biden’s homeland security secretary said the entire immigration system was “gutted” by the Trump administration.
“Quite frankly we are working around the clock to replace the cruelty of the past administration with an orderly, humane and safe immigration process,” Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said.
Mayorkas said part of the overhaul includes possibly letting families who were separated at the border reunite and stay in the U.S.
“And if they seek to reunite here in the United States, we will explore lawful pathways for them to remain in the United States,” Mayorkas said.
Some asylum seekers are now legally allowed to enter the U.S. under new Biden administration policies while they wait for their day in immigration court. Mayorkas said three ports of entry are allowing the asylum seekers who pre-register inside the U.S. Even some Democrats, like Texas Rep. Henry Cuellar, are concerned.
“I got border mayors who are saying, ‘Wait! Hold it, hold it. Our hospitals are full,'” Cuellar said. “We are not getting enough vaccines right now. And you are releasing undocumented people are our bus stations and our centers without even checking them for COVID-19.”
But the migrants are required to have a negative COVID-19 test in most circumstances before entering. Many of the migrants have been waiting for years in shelters inside Mexico.
At the Conservative Political Action Conference Sunday, Trump called out Biden’s new immigration policies.
“Perhaps worst of all, Joe Biden’s decision to cancel border security has single-handedly launched a youth migrant crisis that is enriching child smugglers,” Trump said.
A smuggler NewsNation spoke with said the opposite is happening. The smuggler, who did not want his name used, said there have been fewer people hiring him to illegally cross since Biden took office. The smuggler said more people feel confident trying to cross illegally on their own at the border without the help of a smuggler since Biden took office.