Immigration remains one of the most volatile political topics in the U.S. as we draw nearer and nearer to the primaries for the 2016 presidential election. Advocates of reform maintain that the only way to resolve the issue is to offer an expedited path to American citizenship for undocumented immigrants currently residing stateside. Meanwhile, those who oppose reform believe that president Barack Obama’s administration is not doing enough to secure the border and promote heightened domestic security. These individuals are spearheaded by a group of governors from 26 states who have filed a federal lawsuit in Texas challenging Obama’s executive actions on immigration. While it is yet to be revealed how that will turn out, a recent report from the Department of Homeland Security has indicated a drastic decrease in the number of undocumented immigrants being apprehended at the border in contrast to last year.
According to The Latin Post, the Department of Homeland Security Secretary, Jeh Johnson, provided the report last week as part of an ongoing update on the immigration situation in America. The report itself focused largely on changes that have been made to security at the border, including the adoption and use of new technologies as well as an increase in border patrol personnel. Speaking in front of the House Appropriations Committee, Johnson explained a drastic drop in apprehensions taking place at the border.
“During the first six months of the fiscal year 2015, the number of total apprehensions along the Southwest border, which is a strong indicator of total attempts to cross the border illegally, was 28 percent lower than total apprehensions during the same period in fiscal year 2014. Longer term, border apprehensions in the first six months of fiscal year 2015 are a fraction of what they were 15 years ago, when, in fiscal year 2000, a total of 1.6 million people were apprehended attempting to cross the Southern border,” said Johnson.
While adversaries of immigration reform may state that this drop in apprehensions has to do with a lack of effort on the part of border patrol members, this seems not to the case. According to The Blaze, the decrease likely has to do with efforts on the part of the Obama administration to reduce immigration surges from Central American countries, like those seen in fiscal year 2014, as a whole.