President Trump’s administration finalized Department of Homeland Security (DHS) rules that seek to end asylum shopping and reduce fraud in the United States’ asylum process.
DHS issued a series of final regulations on Thursday — which will go into effect in January 2021 — that tighten the nation’s asylum processes and ensure border crossers are not bypassing asylum in other safe countries in order to use asylum as a reason to enter the U.S.
Specifically, the regulations solidify that most border crossers seeking asylum through the southern border will have to first seek asylum in Mexico, which has a rigorous asylum process.
The same rule has applied to the U.S. northern border with Canada for years, successfully, where foreign nationals cannot asylum shop and instead must seek asylum in the first safe country they enter.
In addition, the regulations make clear that in most cases, claims of gang violence and domestic violence are not valid grounds for asylum in the U.S. The regulations give federal immigration judges and officials the ability to weigh more particulars in each asylum case.
For example, border crossers who entered the U.S. illegally and have used fraudulent documents or have criminal convictions would be far less likely to be granted asylum to remain in the country.
The regulatory changes will also help speed up the adjudication process for those claiming asylum, according to Center for Immigration Studies Director of Policy Jessica Vaughan. The changes will make sure credible claims are not waiting years for approval due to non-credible claims clogging up the process.
“That improvement has not been mentioned by critics, who want the public to believe that every applicant deserves to stay and that our current system is not dysfunctional, which it plainly is,” Vaughan said.
The definitive nature of the regulations will streamline the adjudication process as well and make the asylum system fairer with a set of rules applying to all claimants. If the reforms are thrown out by Democrat Joe Biden, Vaughan said the U.S. could see a surge of illegal immigration.
“With illegal arrivals at the border picking up again in recent weeks, Biden’s team would be well advised to allow these changes to go into effect so that they do not have to deal with a new crisis and the burden it will impose on American communities, just as the country is struggling to recover from the pandemic shutdowns,” Vaughan said.
The regulations are the latest maneuvers by Trump to build a legal wall at the U.S.-Mexico border to prevent mass asylum fraud, illegal immigration, drug trafficking, and human trafficking by international crime syndicates.
Other rules in place, such as the “Remain in Mexico” policy and a federal order known as Title 42, give federal immigration officials the ability to quickly return border crossers to their native countries and prevent them from being released into the interior of the U.S.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.