It will not be easy to find a single person who applauds the new immigration policy of the Biden era.
His decision to end Title 42 was a courageous one, after all it was a relic of the Trump era that closed the door on more than 2 million migrants, ignoring America’s commitments to domestic and international asylum laws.
But replacing it with Title 8, with threats of 5-year bans from entering the United States and even jail sentences for repeat migrants, as well as a militarized force at the border, cannot be cause for rejoicing.
With a smiling face, the secretary of security Alejandro Mayorkas highlighted that the number of “encounters” at the border was 50% lower after the end of Title 42, compared to the numbers that were registered in the previous days.
That so far, no border chaos has been triggered is good. But, as Mayorkas himself suggested, it is premature to ring the celebration bells.
Because this administration convinced us that a lasting solution to the phenomenon of migration to the United States involves resolving the structural causes that push entire families on the most dangerous journey of their lives.
In that respect there have been many promises and few results. It would be a pity if the United States were satisfied with calming the situation on the border and resolving the root problems, through comprehensive proposals like Senator Bob Menéndez did.
Of course, nobody expects the problem to be solved overnight, and it is understood that investments to attack the root causes are almost impossible to achieve in the midst of the dysfunctional political class in Washington, but it is at least important to outline a road map, not just a containment strategy with military and punitive components.
The great paradox is that the Republicans passed a bill with such draconian provisions that the actions of the Biden administration seem generous by comparison.
The Republican bill resurrects some of the most infamous policies of the Donald Trump era, including finishing the border wall, expediting deportation of most asylum seekers, restoring the controversial Stay in Mexico program, and adopting e-Verify at a larger scale.
Democratic legislator Jerry Nadler is right: “My fellow Republicans are trying to take us back to the failed, illegal and immoral policies of the Trump administration. The radical, inhumane and racist immigration actions of the former president… undermined our moral standing in the world and did not make us any safer.”
Nobody should have a clear conscience about the current state of affairs. Temporary relief is a “Band-Aid” for a patient who requires major surgery.