President Joe Biden spoke on Friday with his Mexican counterpart Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, promising to reverse the previous administration’s “draconian” immigration policies.
Per Fox News, the White House told the press that Biden and Lopez Obrador held the discussion in order to “review bilateral cooperation on a range of bilateral and regional issues, particularly regional migration.”
Unlike his predecessor Donald Trump, the White House said, Biden will try to reduce the influx of illegal immigrants from Latin America by addressing the underlying causes of migration and reforming asylum application procedures.
“The president outlined his plan to reduce migration by addressing its root causes, increasing resettlement capacity and lawful alternative immigration pathways, improving processing at the border to adjudicate requests for asylum, and reversing the previous administration’s draconian immigration policies.”
During the 2020 campaign, Biden repeatedly said that he would seek to undo and reverse Trump’s immigration policies.
He also promised to end Trump’s controversial “remain in Mexico” policy, which forced migrants to stay in America’s southern neighbor as they await their hearings.
He has already delivered on some key promises.
On his first day in office, the Democrat halted the construction of the wall at the U.S.-Mexico border and signed a memorandum to protect the 2012 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program recipients from deportations.
Furthermore, Biden put an end to the so-called Muslim ban, reversed Trump’s plan to exclude undocumented immigrants from the census and extended the Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) designation for Liberians until 2022.
He also enacted a 100-day moratorium on deportations, which angered some on the right, prompting the red-leaning state of Texas to file a lawsuit deeming the order unconstitutional.
In addition, Biden has vowed to pass sweeping immigration reform. His plan is expected to include a path to citizenship for millions of undocumented immigrants and various protections for millions of families.
As NBC News reported, Biden’s immigration legislation is expected to include protections for migrant children and make it easier for them to apply for asylum in the United States from their own countries. The legislation will also call for more immigration judges to handle cases and demand changes in immigration laws.
The bill would need 60 votes in the Senate to become law, so at least 9 Republicans would have to vote for it. The bill will be introduced by Democratic Sen. Robert Menendez of New Jersey, who acknowledged in a statement that passing it will most likely be a “a Herculean task.”