Biden’s DHS Slow-Rolling Trump-Era ‘Remain in Mexico’ Policy Despite Being Ordered to Restart It by Federal Judge

The Biden Department of Homeland Security is barely re-implementing former President Donald Trump’s “Remain in Mexico” policy for migrants who have crossed illegally into the U.S., despite being ordered to press forward with full implementation by a federal judge.

The Washington Times reported that under Trump, some 1,000 migrants daily were sent back to Mexico, but under President Biden, that figure has been reduced to just a trickle:

In January, the program enrolled just 13 people a day and ousted an average of eight people per day. That is out of nearly 5,000 encounters a day.

“No one could call this current effort to reimplement MPP [Migrant Protection Protocols] an actual good-faith effort,” Rep. Clay Higgins, Louisiana Republican, told Homeland Security Department officials in a scolding at a congressional hearing this month.

The paper added:

Sen. James Lankford, Oklahoma Republican, visited an MPP enrollment center in January. He marveled at the massive taxpayer-funded complex of six immigration courtrooms, 120 meeting rooms and other space designed to help process migrants who said they feared going back to their home countries. At the time he visited, officials had evaluated 60 people and let in 57 of them.

MPP started in January 2019 but ramped up that summer as the Trump administration grappled with a border surge.

Mexico, under threat of severe sanctions, agreed to take back more people under the program. Border Patrol arrests plummeted 70% by September, and the number of illegal immigrant families dropped even faster.

Biden ended the program on day one of his presidency, but his order was rebuffed by a federal court that ruled he illegally ended it in violation of U.S. law.

A subsequent attempted by DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas to end the program was also rebuffed, with a federal judge ordering it to be re-implemented fully.

That hasn’t happened, however, according to the Times.

Brandon Judd, president of the National Border Patrol Council, said MPP was a critical element to solving the 2019 surge.

“Under the Trump administration, we were enrolling per day between 2,000 and 3,000 people in the MPP,” he said. “The reason why it was 2,000 to 3,000 is because that’s what we were apprehending per day. … That’s why the number of crossings dropped.”

The Biden administration continues to voice its opposition to the program.

“We disapprove of this program, and the president and the secretary have made quite clear that MPP is not aligned with this administration’s values. And actually distracts from some of the important priorities that we have that we believe will have a similar effect on reducing border flow,” said Blas Nunez-Neto, acting assistant secretary for border and immigration policy at Homeland Security.

Higgins says statements like that appear to prove the administration is not making a real effort to follow the federal judge’s order.

“Why would we expect DHS to legitimately comply with the court order in good faith when it’s clear that DHS leadership opposes MPP as a policy?” he said.