If you want to know why there is a rush at the border after a lull following Trump’s election, look no further than the magnet of amnesty for those who come here with children.
On September 5, 2017, far from his pledge to “immediately” end amnesty, President Trump promise to end Obama’s illegal DACA program. Yet according to new data from the Justice Department, just this fiscal year, 153,000 illegals were granted amnesty through March: 138,470 were renewals, and 15,294 were initial applications.
Furthermore, because the administration has foolishly decided to listen to a district judge and renew the program even after the deadline, in violation of federal law and the Constitution, 64,000 more applications were submitted past the deadline, and 51,000 remain pending. That is the power of a single district judge. On average, 757 applications have been renewed daily so far this fiscal year.
These decisions might seem “compassionate” to some, but as you see the spike in MS-13 gangs and drug supply, you can check that compassion at our border. As long as there is a smuggling magnet for younger boys to come here for amnesty, the drug cartels and transnational gangs will be in business. And as we noted in our exhaustive series on the drug overdose crisis, we pay for it in the form of tens of thousands of drug deaths.
The Trump effect on illegal immigration
The migration flow over the past 18 months makes a lot of sense. After Trump was elected, the border crossings plummeted on the premise that Trump would be a new sheriff in town and immediately end catch-and-release and stop all amnesty, as he promised emphatically in his famous Phoenix campaign speech. But since the first few months of his presidency, when he began obsessively emoting about the need for “taking care of the DACA people,” numbers have been rising. The cartels clearly understand that while the border is tighter than under Obama, it’s not the fundamental paradigm shift they feared. Over 50,000 illegals have been apprehended in March, the highest level for that month since the 2013-2014 border surge, which was spawned by the original DACA amnesty.
Border crossings have now increased by 219 percent since the low point of the “Trump effect” last April, including an 800 percent increase in the number of unaccompanied children and 680 percent in families. Drug seizures have increased 37 percent from an already high baseline. In just one month, the number of family units increased by 49 percent and the number of unaccompanied children (UAC) increased by 41 percent. And remember, these are the ones who are interdicted. There is no way of knowing how many tens of thousands cross every month without detection and poison our communities with drugs and gangs.
As Brandon Judd, president of the National Border Patrol Council, said on my podcast yesterday, the drug cartels will often send in a clunky caravan of dozens of phony asylum-seeking families from Central America to keep the border patrol occupied at a given sector. They will then prepare their high-value clients – gang leaders, drug mules, or Middle Easterners – to come in right behind them in the gap created by the diversion. Never forget that not a single border crossing is orchestrated without a drug cartel.
Do you remember what happened the last time border crossings surged to this level, beginning in 2013? It precipitated the worst drug overdose crisis ever because of the cheap, pure, and abundant supply of lethal drugs that were able to flood our communities. Anyone who virtue-signals about the “opioid” crisis but turns a blind eye to the border surge should examine his sense of sympathy and priorities.
DACA amnesty creates a booming business for lethal drugs
The bottom line is that as long as there is a demand for border crossings created by the promise of DACA amnesty, we will continue to have a dangerous border and an epidemic-level drug crisis. The promise of amnesty for teenage boys, in particular, is the most dangerous magnet for drugs and gangs. As the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) noted yesterday in its written testimony before the House Oversight Subcommittee on National Security that “the Mexican Cartels work closely with transnational and U.S.-based gangs to support their criminal operations on both sides of the U.S./Mexico Border, and they provide a readily available retail distribution chain for their drugs.” They further observe that “in Texas border communities, the Mexican Cartels recruit children to support their smuggling operations, and they actively recruit and corrupt local, state and federal officials.”
The results are devastating for Mexicans, as 29,000 people were killed in 2017, mostly by the drug cartels. What are the results on our side of the border? This, from Texas DPS:
Importantly, the Mexican Cartels have exploited the porous U.S./Mexico border to dominate our nation’s lucrative illicit drug market, including marijuana, cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, and now, fentanyl–and Texas has become the drug and human transshipment center for the nation. The opiate crisis that some of the members of this committee have experienced in your districts illustrates the Mexican Cartel’s ability to quickly diversify drug smuggling and trafficking operations to quickly become the largest supplier of our nation’s heroin–and now fentanyl. For example, over the last decade, Texas State Troopers routinely seized large loads of cocaine, marijuana, methamphetamine and heroin transported from Mexico, but never large loads of fentanyl–until recently. In less than four months–in three traffic stops alone–our State Troopers seized 23.977 kilograms of fentanyl.
The report goes on to explain how this supply of fentanyl was enough to kill 12 million Americans. And this is just what they interdicted. Imagine what they didn’t catch. We are now seeing analogues of fentanyl, such as carfentail, that are essentially chemical weapons and are already killing people. How much more are we willing to sacrifice on the sacred altar of illegal amnesty?
President Trump seems perplexed over DACA amnesty. On the one hand, he perfectly articulates the problem with the border, the magnets that empower the drug cartels, and the source of the drug crisis. But then he seems to think that DACA is some sort of ideal and higher form of amnesty, rather than the catalyst of that same drug crisis and the most direct magnet for bringing in drugs and gangs.
If a district judge ordered Trump to import 50 kilograms of fentanyl, would he listen? It’s time for Trump to announce he is following the laws of our country on drugs, asylum, and unaccompanied aliens and that our border is closed to amnesty. That is not only the right thing to do for our sovereignty and security, it is the compassionate thing to do for both Americans and Mexicans.
Daniel Horowitz is a senior editor of Conservative Review. Follow him on Twitter @RMConservative.