Pew Research Center reports that the first fiscal year of the Trump administration witnessed significant increases in the number of people arrested and criminally prosecuted for violating immigration laws such as entering and reentering the United States illegally, according to new government data.
In 2018, the number of federal criminal arrests for immigration offenses increased from 58,031 to 108,667 — marking an 87 percent increase based on an August report by the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS).
Similarly, the number of suspects who were criminally prosecuted for immigration violations went up by 66 percent between fiscal year 2017 and 2018, from 59,797 to 99,479.
These increases reflect a policy change that the Trump administration has pursued in trying to subject border crossers to criminal rather than civil penalties.
However, the number of overall apprehensions at the U.S.—Mexico border should have America First advocates worried.
In 1998, the federal government was able to apprehend 1,516,680 immigrants in 1998, whereas in 2018 there were only 398,579 border apprehensions.
All in all, the good news is that the Trump administration has been taking proactive steps in trying to criminally prosecute and deport illegal aliens.
However, it must do more to secure the border and turn back as many illegals as possible. This will require America to get its priorities straight. In other words, it will have to scale back its never-ending wars and military bases abroad and put those resources towards defending our border.
The stakes are high when dealing with immigration. In other countries throughout the West, loose immigration standards have proven to be socially detrimental and fiscally burdensome. These same sets of problems could be coming to America if it doesn’t get its act together on the immigration issue.
GOP voters want to see results, which is why heading into the 2020 elections, immigration is the #1 issue for them.
In the meantime, the Trump administration should do all it can to try to bolster border enforcement and continue prosecuting illegal border crossers.
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