According to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the number of illegal immigrants entering the U.S. through the southwest border has dropped significantly during President Trump’s first month in office. The numbers are compared to those of the last three months of Obama’s presidency.
In January, 31,575 individuals were taken into custody between ports of entry on the southwest border. In contrast, in each of the previous three months there were more than 45,000, states the CPB report released Monday.
Jim Carafano, a security expert with the Heritage Foundation, said that this change is due to an assortment of factors.
“There are a lot of reasons why numbers go up and down, but some of it could be a reaction to statements from President Trump that we’re going to increase border security and seeing media reports that we’re going to get tougher on illegal immigration in the U.S. People may be more resistant to come,” Carafano said.
“You can’t make too much of monthly numbers, but if you see the total lawful immigration population drop, that means you’re doing something that’s impacting the system overall.”
A senior Trump administration official said Tuesday that the President is considering signing a legislation which will provide a pathway to legal status, but not yet citizenship, for people who want to come and stay in the United States.
But that doesn’t change the administration’s plans to build a wall along the southern border, and it’s already making its first steps to developing and implementing one of Trump’s hallmark campaign promises.
President Trump told the Conservative Political Action Conference last Friday that construction will start “very soon” and is “way, way, way ahead of schedule.”
However, a White House spokesperson said Tuesday the President is “open to having conversations” about fixing America’s immigration system, but the primary focus now is on “border control.”
Immigration will be one of the topics in Trump’s address to the joint session of Congress Tuesday night, reports Fox News.
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