A picture is worth 1,000 words, and this graphic exposes 1,000 lies about the so-called asylum-seekers from Central America in recent years.
As you can see, the rise and fall of family units migrating from Central America is inverse to the homicide rates in those countries.
Never mind that even high general violence is not grounds for asylum, but proponents of open borders are claiming that we must take in hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of impoverished Central Americans because they are fleeing violence. The problem is that there is almost a perfectly inverse relationship between homicide levels in these countries and migrations trends. A careful look at the ebb and flow demonstrates that they are almost all economic migrants who are incentivized by the pull factors of amnesty in this country along with our open borders. They are not related to push factors in their home country stemming from violence.
Let’s begin with the number of “credible fear” applications. From fiscal year 2009 through fiscal year 2018, the number of credible fear referrals at the border have increased by 1,744 percent — from 5,369 to 99,035. Looking at the country homicide data, it’s clear that over that same period, the homicide rate in Guatemala, which has sent us the lion’s share of migrants the past two years, is sharply down. The homicide rate in Honduras has been basically flat but has recently plummeted, and while there was a two-year spike in homicides in El Salvador, the migration was already increasing even as the homicide rate was going down, and now, after the 2013-2015 spike, it’s going down again. The immigration trends have nothing to do with homicide rates. Overall, while asylum petitions have spiked by 1,744 percent since 2009, homicide has dropped 16 percent in El Salvador, 35 percent in Honduras, and 43 percent in Guatemala.
The numbers are even starker when you look at the individual countries. El Salvador, by far, has the highest rate of homicide relative to the other Central American countries. Honduras is in the middle, and Guatemala is relatively the least violent of the three. Yet the migration trends are flipped.
El Salvador has more than twice the homicide rate of Guatemala, yet three times as many family units from Guatemala were apprehended this year at our southern border as families from El Salvador. In total, Border Patrol apprehension of family units for FY 2018 breaks down as follows:
El Salvador: 13,669
We are told that the families are fleeing violence, but the numbers show an inverse relationship with both the rate and timing of the violence. Customs and Border Protection didn’t track family units by country of origin before FY 2015, but I pulled the data on total apprehensions by country since FY 2007, and every year, more people from Guatemala were caught crossing the border than Salvadorans. The math just doesn’t add up.
Another interesting data point showing a reverse trend is Mexico. The number of family units crossing from Mexico is down almost 50 percent since FY 2015. Yet, astoundingly, homicide in Mexico has spiked sharply over the past decade, thanks to the cartel wars driven by our open borders. In 2016, the homicide rate was 16.2, and last year it jumped to 22.5, the highest level on record and almost on par with that of Guatemala. Yet migration from Mexico is down, while it’s gushing from Guatemala even as its rate of violence plummets.
Why Guatemala? According to the Phoenix ICE office, which has seen an unprecedented flow of migration from there, “On the news in Guatemala they are saying that you can get a work permit if you’re in a family, if you’re coming with your child, and that you’re going to be released.”
In other words, we’ve been lied to, dramatically. It’s all about the incentive of amnesty and economic migration, not violence.
The tragic reality is that our “compassionate” policies incentivizing these people to make the journey are ensuring that they experience more violence on the way than they would in their home countries. According to a report by Doctors Without Borders, 68.3 percent of the migrants trying to enter the U.S. report being victims of violence on their journey, while “nearly 1/3 of the women were sexually abused during their journey.”
Incidentally, the homicide rate is going up in many of our sanctuary cities while going down in Central America. What does that tell you? But Republicans have done a lousy job forcing this issue on the campaign trail.
NBC found in its last poll that Republicans were making progress thanks to the last-minute focus on immigration. Imagine if every Republican candidate actually ran on Trump’s immigration plan and had been exposing the truth about this invasion for the past two years.
Daniel Horowitz is a senior editor of Conservative Review. Follow him on Twitter @RMConservative.