Reinstated “Remain In Mexico” Policy Faltering Under Biden

The Biden Administration has been under a court order to reinstate President Donald Trump’s “Remain in Mexico” policy regarding illegal immigrants awaiting hearings on asylum claims since last fall. The policy formally described as the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) program has not produced the results it was designed to accomplish lately, however. The Department of Homeland Security disclosed that only 267 illegal migrants were enrolled in the program and returned to Mexico in December.

None of the illegals enrolled in MPP in December were from Mexico or the Northern Triangle, which are the sources of most illegal migration.

Trump started the MPP in 2019 as a measure to stop illegal migrants who claimed asylum after being apprehended from simply disappearing inside the US and not returning for their court hearings. Biden repealed MPP immediately upon taking office. Because he did not comply with federal law in stopping the program, he was ultimately ordered to put the program back into operation.

Around 68,000 migrants were sent back to Mexico to await their court hearings under MPP during the Trump Administration.

Federation for American Immigration Reform director R.J. Hauman said that “MPP is still dead” and the reinstatement by court order is “for show.” He noted that the Biden Administration’s efforts to comply with the court order are not being done in good faith and are “mocking” federal courts.

The recent DHS disclosure explains the exemptions to MPP now allowed for those claiming asylum. Asylum claimants who are not enrolled are generally released into the US as before, keeping with the older method known by critics as “catch and release.”

Among the exemptions for enrollment in MPP are claims of “particular vulnerabilities.” Migrants are allowed to claim. Therefore they are gay or transgender to say they fear being returned to Mexico.