Chaos at US-Mexico border on eve of Title 42’s expiration

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – With the pandemic-era Title 42 policy to block immigrants at the southern border set to expire at 11:59 p.m. Thursday evening, officials around the county are asking for federal aid, even as the White House rolls out new rules.

On Wednesday, President Joe Biden’s Department of Homeland Security secretary Alejandro Mayorkas announced a new rule in the wake of the expiring Title 42 which requires refugees and migrants to first seek and be denied asylum in another country before reaching the United States.

“We are finalizing a new rule to encourage individuals to use available lawful, safe and orderly pathways to enter the United States,” Mayorkas said Wednesday. “The rule presumes that those who do not use lawful pathways to enter the United States are ineligible for asylum.”

Since Title 42 went into effect three years ago, Customs and Border Protection has turned away more than 3 million asylum seekers. In April 2022, the CDC announced it would terminate the public-health order this spring.

Last week, President Joe Biden sent an additional 1,500 troops to the border in preparation for the end of the policy. Around 16,000 migrants are waiting in Tijuana for the border restrictions to be lifted.

There are currently more than 19,000 migrants being held in U.S. Customs and Border Protection Facilities, and that number is expected to get drastically higher. San Diego’s Border Patrol is reportedly 150% over capacity, and they are expecting 6x the normal amount of people seeking asylum, before Title 42 expires.

KUSI’s Jason Austell and Allie Wagner reported live from the US-Mexico border on Good Morning San Diego to show the chaos that U.S. Border Patrol and law enforcement agencies are forced to deal with.

Austell noted that all the migrants he spoke to through the border wall asked if he could charge their phones, since they need to use an app to begin processing. Austell was happily charging their devices in the news van, as iPhones were rotated in and out nonstop.

Allie Wagner spoke to people who have been waiting six days, while others just arrived at the border one day ago.

Rep. Darrell Issa joined KUSI’s Paul Rudy on Good Morning San Diego to discuss the chaos at the border, specifically here in San Diego.

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