Biden’s budget only allocates for 350 extra border guards

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President Joe Biden’s budget provides $7.3 billion for refugees but only funds an additional 350 border patrol agents to deal with a surge in migrants illegally crossing the northern and southern borders.

Biden’s $6.8 trillion plan, which he unveiled on Thursday, makes clear his priorities heading into the next fiscal year.

Included in his plan to hike taxes on the wealthy and corporations to pay for a plethora of social programs is the money for migrants and a mere $40 million to combat fentanyl trafficking, a growing issue of concern for Americans.

US deaths from fentanyl have been on the rise since the 2010s, spiking during Covid-19 and continuing to rise under the Biden presidency. In 2022, 107,000 Americans died of overdose. 

Biden’s budget only allocates for 350 extra border guards

President Biden’s budget proposal provides $7.3 billion for refugees but only funds an additional 350 border patrol agents – above migrants at the Texas border

But, in a nod to Republicans’ call for more border enforcement – an issue they are expected to hammer Biden on in the 2024 election – the president does include funding to fight illegal immigration.

The president’s proposal outlines $7.3 billion in funding  to the Office of Refugee Resettlement to help respond to the needs of unaccompanied children crossing the border or other humanitarian entrants who need assistance.

His proposal also allocates nearly $25 billion to U.S. Customs and Border Protection and Immigration and Customs Enforcement. It’s only an $800 million increase over the 2023 budget level. 

The increased funding comes as Biden administration officials have said they are expecting a surge in migrants crossing the border illegally once Title 42 is lifted on May 11. The pandemic policy, enacted during Donald Trump’s presidency, allowed migrants to be returned across the border swiftly.

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The administration says it has been working on other policies to help combat the expected surge, including the possibility of a major U-turn in his immigration policy as administration officials weigh reviving a Trump-era policy detaining families who cross the southern border illegally.

Biden’s budget proposes a new $4.7 billion contingency fund to help the Department of Homeland Security deal the surges and more than $1.5 billion to tackle the backlog of over 1.8 million cases pending in the immigration courts. 

The funding includes $535 million for technology at the border, the $40 million to combat fentanyl trafficking and the funds to hire an additional 460 processing assistants at CBP and ICE.

And the $865 million for ICE would include funds to increase processing for the asylum caseload, work on reducing the requests backlog of immigration benefits, and improve refugee processing.

His budget is likely to be blocked in Congress, and Republicans have already called the plan ‘reckless’ and a ‘road map to fiscal ruin’. 

Biden's budget proposal also allocates nearly $25 billion to U.S. Customs and Border Protection and Immigration and Customs Enforcement - above National Guard agents in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, on the Texas border

Biden’s budget proposal also allocates nearly $25 billion to U.S. Customs and Border Protection and Immigration and Customs Enforcement – above National Guard agents in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, on the Texas border

Biden's budget offers only an $800 million increase over the 2023 budget when it comes to fighing illegal immigration - above two migrants from Ecuador sit after crossing the border into Yuma, Arizona

Biden’s budget offers only an $800 million increase over the 2023 budget when it comes to fighing illegal immigration – above two migrants from Ecuador sit after crossing the border into Yuma, Arizona

Biden’s attempts to crackdown on illegal immigration as the number of migrants crossing the southern border reaches historic levels

In 2021, the U.S. saw 1.7 million immigrants come into the country. In 2022, that number rose to more than 2 million. 

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Additionally he is being sued for a proposed rule that would make migrants ineligible for asylum in the U.S. if they did not first attempt to claim asylum in a country they passed through.

And the immigration problem is growing on the United States’ norther border with a surge in migration being seen there.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection transferred 25 extra agents to the northern border earlier this week as the number of migrants crossing in from Canada continues to rise. 

While illegal crossings at the southern border remain a larger overall problem, the number of crossings at the north has risen nearly 850% and is causing concern.

It is a problem that works both ways – some migrants are actually sneaking into Canada from the U.S., causing a spike in immigration numbers for America’s neighbor to the north.

The Swanton Sector, which includes sections of Vermont, New Hampshire and New York, experienced an 846% increase in apprehensions from October 2022 through this January, compared to the year prior. 

President Joe Biden released his $6.8 trillion budget plan on Thursday

President Joe Biden released his $6.8 trillion budget plan on Thursday

Agents apprehended 367 people in January, which they say is more than they encountered since 2011 combined. 

The average annual number of encounters in the Swanton Sector over the last dozen years is just 28.

The Swanton Sector is a a 2,200 square mile area with USCBP agents based in Swanton, Vermont. 

There is no fencing along the crossing. Much of the area is woods and dirt paths. There is heavy snowfall and wetlands across the region this time of year.

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Nearly two-thirds of the southbound migrants arrested by U.S. border agents in the Swanton Sector are from Mexico, according to CBP numbers.

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