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Republicans warn of border ‘nightmare’ when US ends Covid controls

Republicans warn of border 'nightmare' when US ends Covid controls
Source: Video Screenshot

Republicans warned Wednesday of “chaos” and a “nightmare” at the US-Mexico border next week when the government lifts Covid-19 rules used to block most migrants for the past three years.

“May 11 is a nightmare day for the American people, particularly people in New Mexico and Texas,” said Senator Lindsey Graham.

“What’s going to happen is that the Biden administration is going to repeal the use of Title authority to expel people,” he said.

He predicted the elimination of Title 42, to be replaced by a different enforcement mechanism known as Title 8, will lead to a doubling of attempts by undocumented migrants to enter the country from Mexico, overwhelming border authorities.

“In the next 90 days, you’re going to (see) from 900,000 to 1.1 million” migrants crossing the border, Graham predicted in a press conference.

Graham and other Republican senators urged President Joe Biden to retain Title 42, a public health emergency measure, even though the government is ending other Covid-era control measures like requiring foreign arrivals to be vaccinated.

“America is under siege here,” Graham said.

“I’ve asked Democrats to join the effort to not repeal Title 42 on May 11. It’s been used 2.3 million times to expel people who came here illegally,” he said.

The Biden administration announced Tuesday it was mobilizing 1,500 more troops to help monitor and manage the migrant flow — in addition to 2,500 already in place — in anticipation of a surge of crossings after May 11.

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas also plans to visit the Texas border area on Thursday and Friday to review preparations for lifting title 42.

The administration has warned that unlike Title 42, Title 8 will mean undocumented migrants detained inside the United States will face legal penalties that will render them ineligible to come to the country legally.

Meanwhile the administration is stepping up paths for legal migrants like asylum seekers, including a smartphone app, CPB One, for setting up an interview with immigration authorities.

The government also said last week it was setting up processing centers for hopeful migrants in other countries — starting with Colombia and Guatemala.

Canada and Spain have agreed to take in some of those who are cleared for emigration by the processing centers, US officials said.

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Agence France-Presse (AFP) is a French international news agency headquartered in Paris, France. Founded in 1835 as Havas, it is the world's oldest news agency.

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