A longstanding record for illegal migrant crossings in a single day was broken along the southern border Monday as more than 12,000 entrants besieged U.S. border officials and overwhelmed processing centers.
Fox News reported on the historic avalanche of crossings, over 12,600 in total comprised of 11,000 apprehensions and more than 1,600 encountered at ports of entry. Thousands more remain at a processing center in Del Rio, Texas following a surge of crossings at Eagle Pass. Detainment facilities are at more than 260% capacity.
Footage and photographs captured rivers of migrants slinging backpacks and children over their shoulders and shuffling through plastic orange fencing on their way to the United States, ostensibly under the hope that President Joe Biden will be more accommodating to illegal entrants. Sources told Fox that border agents are operating under a ratio of 200:1.
The siege was added to by over 3,000 encounters at the Tucson Sector in Arizona, leading the state’s Democratic Governor Katie Hobbs to deploy the National Guard for assistance.
“With this Executive Order, I am taking action where the federal government won’t. But we can’t stand alone, Arizona needs resources and manpower to reopen the Lukeville crossing, manage the flow of migrants, and maintain a secure, orderly and humane border,” Hobbs said in a statement on Friday.
Through FY23, the U.S. has seen more than 2.4 million illegal crossings, with September being the highest month on record. November and December, typically months when crossings slow down, have approached near-record totals, with agents regularly seeing more than 10,000 crossings per day.
Last week, officials with the Department of Homeland Security told Congress that there were more than 607,000 “getaways,” or migrants who escaped custody and remain unaccounted for in the U.S. The figures include over 85,000 children placed in temporary homes and who were later lost within a bureaucratic nightmare unfolding under DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas. House Republicans, led by Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), have filed a motion to impeach the embattled top immigration official.
The surge in crossings comes months after the Biden administration opened a “back door” to grant migrants asylum protections across a number of additional countries, enabling them to claim hardships that would allow them to remain in the U.S., most likely permanently. Sanctuary cities like Chicago and New York have seen services buckle under thousands of new migrant residents, and scores of Democrats have petitioned President Joe Biden to speed up work authorizations in order to keep their illegal residents off the public dole.
House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) remains in government funding negotiations with the White House, offering the prospect of additional funding for Ukraine in exchange for enhanced border protections. The White House has signaled it is open to “significant compromises” and reportedly is open to Title 42 reforms that would allow for more rapid deportations.
U.S. Senator James Lankford (R-OK) told Fox News the two sides “are making real progress” toward a border solution.
“We finally have everybody at the table and everyone admitting that this is a national security crisis that we do have to address. That’s actually progress,” he said.