First six months as president – Biden’s progress on immigration
During the 2020 presidential election, there were several pivotal issues for the American population when choosing the nation’s next leader. On the one hand, clearly, the health crisis caused by the global Coronavirus pandemic and its impact on the economy has been a priority since the beginning of 2020 and also influenced the election. On the other hand, one of the most important sectors during the election was immigration, as it always tends to be.
However, this time it was different since former President Donald Trump’s administration implemented a large number of policies that restricted and limited immigration in the US, both legal and illegal. Thus, the fact that the American population elected Joe Biden as the nation’s 46th president means that it also supports his stance when it comes to immigration, which is evidently more welcoming than Trump’s.
Since President Biden took office in late January 2021, his administration has removed multiple restrictions from the Trump administration, rescinded strict policies, expanded certain immigration programs, and introduced a fairly extensive immigration bill.
Broadly speaking, the Biden administration has focused on lifting limitations on humanitarian programs such as political asylum, which are available to the most vulnerable immigrant communities, transformed certain deportation protocols, intensified human labor within the immigration system, and expanded visa programs for foreign workers.
For a detailed look at Biden’s recent actions on immigration, see: Biden’s First Six Months in Office and Immigration
Biden’s views on his administration’s progress on immigration
One could argue that the Biden administration has advanced by leaps and bounds on immigration by removing restrictive policies and changing guidelines within the country’s immigration agencies.
However, during his first six months in office, President Biden has also faced a gigantic challenge related to the current border situation. By this, we refer to the largest surge of illegal border crossings in decades, with quite alarming border apprehension rates.
This situation is undoubtedly delaying and jeopardizing Biden’s immigration plans, who is trying to promote comprehensive immigration reform in Congress to reshape the immigration system from its roots, but which is currently in limbo due to rising levels of irregular immigration.
President Biden is fully aware of this situation and its potential repercussions. In fact, on Tuesday, July 20, during a celebration of six months in office, President Biden openly stated that his team is still working tirelessly to improve the border situation. Biden explained, “We have to tackle the immigration problem, which we’re working really hard to get done in a humane and serious way”.
Adding to that, the Biden administration is also feeling pressure from activist groups and immigrant rights advocates after a federal judge in Texas ruled against the DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) program, which protects thousands of young immigrants known as Dreamers from deportation.
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