Mayorkas says DHS has been preparing since September for Title 42’s lifting

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas on Sunday said his department has prepared since September for the lifting of Title 42, a measure that has allowed the government to prevent asylum-seekers from getting court appearances during the pandemic.

The measure was imposed during the Trump administration, but the Biden administration is seeking to lift it on May 23, which Mayorkas has acknowledged could lead to greater numbers of people coming to the border.

Mayorkas told “Fox News Sunday” that his department is prepared and has worked effectively with Customs and Border Protection and other partners at the southern border for Title 42’s lifting later this month.

“They’re not in conflict with one another at all,” he said, adding, “The administration is asking for more border patrol agents. These individuals are securing the border.”

Border patrol agents encountered more than 220,000 migrants at the border last month, the highest number reported since 2000. More than 1 million encounters have already been reported so far this year, while 1.7 million were reported in the entire year of 2021.

Mayorkas defended the lifting of Title 42, emphasizing that his department was prepared to handle any potential surges and saying those seeking asylum had a legal right for their cases to be heard.

“You shouldn’t be worried about [Title 42],” he said. “We’ve got a handle on it.”

Republicans have seized on the issue to criticize Biden administration policies at the border, while some vulnerable Democrats have also said they would like to see Title 42 kept in place.

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