Los Angeles Times — Opinion: Is Biden about to close the border in the name of election year politics?

It would be an extreme move, and a violation of the Refugee Act of 1980

BY KAREN MUSALO

FEB. 29, 2024

Multiple news sources report that President Biden is considering implementing executive action to try to close the U.S.-Mexico border, including to asylum seekers. It would be an extreme move, and a violation of the Refugee Act of 1980 and the country’s international obligation to protect those fleeing persecution. Only one other president — Donald Trump — has blatantly breached that obligation before. With the COVID-19 pandemic as a pretext, Trump invoked Title 42 of the U.S. Code, which allowed him to curb migration in the name of public health.

Biden, who came into office harshly criticizing his predecessor’s anti-immigrant policies, now seems poised to resurrect them. Administration sources concede that the president’s border plans are driven by politics, the belief that the immigration situation is “an election liability.”

This view is no surprise. We’ve been fed a narrative that the border is in crisis, overwhelmed by an unprecedented number of immigrants who pose a grave danger to the health and safety of the nation. But that narrative is false: The border is manageable, and rather than being a danger to Americans, immigrants are a net positive economically and socially. Read the article here.