Immigrant Detentions Soar Despite Biden’s Campaign Promises

Immigration detainee Alexander Martinez shows his handwritten notations of allegations of abusive treatment, as he speaks during an interview with The Associated Press inside the Winn Correctional Center in Winnfield, La., Friday, July 30, 2021. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

(AP) — The number of people in federal immigration detention has risen markedly under President Joe Biden. Since the end of February, the number of detainees has more than doubled, to nearly 27,000 as of July 22. That’s higher than the total detained last July under then-President Donald Trump.

The rising detentions are a sore point for Biden’s pro-immigration allies, who had hoped he would turn the page on Trump’s hardline policies. Many of the detainees have cleared their initial screening to seek asylum in the U.S.

A White House spokesman says Biden has proposed reducing the number of detention beds and shifting some of their use to processing immigrants for parole.


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