Biden expected to announce border actions as political heat intensifies ahead of November election

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President Biden is expected to announce executive actions on Tuesday to tackle the ongoing migration crisis at the southern border, as he faces significant political pressure from the left and the right, as well as from voters on the issue. 

Details of what will be announced remain unclear, but Fox News reported on Monday that the order is expected before he leaves for Europe. Some outlets reported that it could involve a mechanism to prevent additional migrant entries into the U.S. once there is a rolling seven-day average of a certain number of apprehensions a day.


Biden Border

President Biden speaks with a member of the Border Patrol as they walk along the U.S.-Mexico border fence in El Paso, Texas, on Jan. 8, 2023. (Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Image)

That mechanism could echo a measure in a so-far thwarted bipartisan Senate bill that was unveiled earlier this year and has backing from the Biden administration but has so far failed to pick up enough support to pass in the upper chamber. In that bill, a Title-42 style expulsion authority would allow agents to quickly remove migrants across the border. 

Biden could attempt to implement an authority by executive order using 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, which allows presidents to limit the entry of foreign nationals into the U.S. 

Former President Trump used 212(f) multiple times during his presidency but was unsuccessful in using it to restrict border crossings, with a legal challenge scuttling the effort. Any similar move by President Biden would almost certainly face a similar challenge.


There were no plans for the president to visit the southern border ahead of his departure for Europe, officials told Fox.

The order comes amid a stalemate on the fiery topic of illegal immigration. In recent months, the numbers of migrant encounters has decreased from the record highs seen in December, where there were more than 200,000 migrant encounters. 

There were 179,725 encounters at the southern border in April, compared to 211,992 in April 2023, and 189,357 in March. While those numbers are lower than highs seen in 2022 and 2023, they still remain high compared to pre-2021 numbers.

The Biden administration has repeatedly said its hands are largely tied regarding fixing what it says is a “broken” immigration system and has repeatedly called for additional reforms and funding from Congress. In a statement to Fox News Digital on Monday, the White House said it “continues to explore a series of policy options and we remain committed to taking action to address our broken immigration system.”

“Congressional Republicans do not care about securing the border or fixing America’s broken immigration system. If they did, they would have voted for the toughest border enforcement in history. Instead, they put partisan politics ahead of our country’s national security,” a White House spokesperson said. 

“While Congressional Republicans chose to stand in the way of additional border enforcement, President Biden will not stop fighting to deliver the resources that border and immigration personnel need to secure our border.”

Republicans, though, have blamed the policies of the administration, including the rollback of Trump-era policies such as wall construction, the Migrant Protection Protocols and increased interior enforcement. They have passed their own legislation in the House that would significantly limit asylum claims and restart border wall construction and similar measures. It has not yet been taken up by the Senate.

House Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., on Fox News Sunday said the reported action from Biden is “too little too late.”


President Biden walks along a stretch of the U.S.-Mexico border in El Paso Texas, Jan. 8, 2023. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File)


“Now he’s trying to desperately show the American people somehow that he wants to address the issue that he himself created,” he said. 

“We documented 64 specific executive actions of President Biden and Secretary Mayorkas of DHS took over the course of the last three and a half years beginning on the first day that President Biden took office to open the border. Why? They did it intentionally. And it has had catastrophic effects upon our country that we’ll be living with for decades to come,” he said.

The administration continues to face pressure from Democratic states and cities, where large amounts of migrants have arrived. Mayors of cities like New York City, Denver and Chicago have demanded more funding from the federal government and have called for additional action, including expedited work permits. Recently, 15 House Democrats wrote to Biden calling on him to take additional action at the southern border.

“It has become clear that the current situation remains untenable, but with Republicans playing politics on border security, it is time for your administration to act. We urge you to use all tools at your disposal, including executive action, to better address security at the Southern border, interdict illicit fentanyl and allow for orderly legal immigration,” the letter said.

Meanwhile, the illegal immigration crisis appears to be looming as a major election issue. A recent Fox News poll found that seven in 10 voters go so far as to say the White House has “mostly failed” at improving border security. 

Trump won in 2016 due in large part to his plans to fix the southern border, an issue Biden’s critics say he has failed to properly address. 


But there has recently been more hawkish language from the administration on the crisis. Recently, DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said some migrants attempt to “game” the system.

“The reality is that some people do indeed try to game the system,” Mayorkas told CBS News last month. “That does not speak to everyone whom we encounter, but there is an element of it, and we deal with it accordingly.”

Fox News’ Lucas Tomlinson contributed to this report.

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