Border Patrol Encountered Record-breaking Number of Illegal Migrants in May - Texas Scorecard

As Biden’s border crisis continues, U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) encountered a record-breaking number of illegal migrants in May, wreaking havoc on the southern border. 

According to CBP, “In total, there were 239,416 encounters along the southwest land border in May, a 2 percent increase compared to April.” 

Illegal migrants are flooding into the country in waves, and the current trends place the U.S. on track for more than 2 million arrests before the end of the federal fiscal year in September. CBP has currently logged more than 1.7 million arrests so far. 

Notably, the average re-encounter rate was 15 percent for Fiscal Years 2014-2019. However, of the 239,416 arrests last month, 25 percent of those trespassers previously encountered Border Patrol at least once within the past year (a 10 percent increase). 

Meanwhile, CBP also saw a rise in the number of unaccompanied minors attempting to cross illegally, with 14,699 encounters in May compared to 12,180 in April. Thus, the average number of unaccompanied minors in the custody of Border Patrol in May was 692 per day—this is more kids in CBP custody than are present in the average elementary school. 

Sheena Rodriguez, president of Secure the Border: Save Texas, previously shared, “There is absolutely nothing humanitarian about the atrocities happening in direct correlation with the current invasion of our southern border,” particularly in the federal emergency intake facilities for these vulnerable minors.

However, these illegal migrants clearly have no fear of arrest or expulsion. CBP Commissioner Chris Magnus says that arrests aren’t all illegal migrants have to fear. 

“As temperatures start to rise in the summer, human smugglers will continue to exploit vulnerable populations and recklessly endanger the lives of migrants for financial gain,” said Magnus. 

“The terrain along the southwest border is extreme, the summer heat is severe, and the miles of desert that migrants must hike after crossing the border are unforgiving,” he added.

Gov. Greg Abbott’s border security push—Operation Lone Star—-has seen some success but has been widely criticized as “political theater” mired with political, legal, and logistical problems. OLS is currently bleeding the state of billions in a stop-gap measure for an unsustainable situation. 

Meanwhile, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has continued suing the Biden administration for its lackadaisical immigration policies. Paxton has also established that he would defend the governor and the Legislature in court if either chooses to deport illegal aliens without the federal government’s permission. 

The Center for Renewing America proposes that each border state declare the border crisis an invasion and defend its borders in the absence of federal action.

Republican delegates to the state convention agreed, making securing the border a legislative priority for the upcoming session.

“We can’t keep going like this,” said Kinney County District Attorney Brent Smith in an interview with Texas Scorecard last week. Smith called for the governor to act and declare the crisis an invasion. 

However, Paxton wants to challenge the current case law as established by the U.S. Supreme Court in Arizona v. U.S. (2012). He also asked that the Legislature pass a law on immigration, thereby allowing his office to challenge the precedent of federal preemption in immigration law. 

In the meantime, Kinney County and other border counties are suffering under the onslaught of illegal migrants, with resources stretched thin and worry rampant as those crossing through the brush in the Texas summer heat are often the smugglers and traffickers, not those seeking a better life.