The Biden administration is reportedly preparing to mandate vaccines for all incoming foreign travelers but is releasing thousands of migrants carrying COVID-19 into the country.
An administration official told Reuters that the action marks the country’s first step toward loosening travel restrictions for noncitizens, which have been in place since the first days of the pandemic. Affected areas include the European Union’s Schengen Area, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Brazil, India, and China.
WHITE HOUSE SILENT ONE WEEK AFTER BIDEN PROMISED ‘ANSWER’ TO TRAVEL RESTRICTION QUESTIONS
White House press secretary Jen Psaki would not directly answer questions in late July about whether or not the government would lift COVID-19 travel bans should airlines require incoming international passengers to show proof of vaccines and has sought to avoid putting a timeline on the full lifting of restrictions.
“We would all like to see not just for tourism but for families to be reunited,” she said. “There are a range of topics in those discussions that are ongoing. The president receives regular briefings on them, but we rely on public health and medical advice on when we’re going to determine changes to be made.”
The latest action comes amid increasing criticism of President Joe Biden’s immigration policies, specifically over reports that border officials are releasing thousands of migrants who have tested positive for the coronavirus into the country.
Sen. Ted Cruz, a Texas Republican, tweeted screenshots of two competing headlines with the “eyes” emoji.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis also attacked Biden’s border policies during a press conference on Wednesday. The president previously suggested that DeSantis and Texas Gov. Greg Abbott “get out of the way” if they weren’t going to abide by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s latest coronavirus guidance.
“Why don’t you do your job? Why don’t you get this border secure?” DeSantis angrily shot back on Wednesday. “Until you do that, I don’t want to hear a blip about COVID from you.”
The last week of July alone saw 7,000 migrants released in downtown McAllen, Texas, 1,500 of whom tested positive for the coronavirus.
City officials said the “shockingly large” population of migrants “increases the threat of COVID spread or other lawlessness within the city.”
Psaki reiterated on Wednesday that “the president continues to convey to anyone, as you’ve said, who wants to come to the United States: Now is not the time to come. It is not the time to come, and try to go through irregular migration.”
“We want to have an effective process where you can apply for asylum, where you can apply for legal status. We have increased our investment in areas like the Central American Minors Program, allowing people to apply from within country so they are not making that dangerous trip,” she continued. “There’s more that needs to be done. We’ve also instituted a number of additional steps recently, including expedited removals, to move people out of the country more quickly. But it’s a — we’re still at work on improving a process and improving a system that was very broken when we took office.”
One senior GOP official suggested to the Washington Examiner that Biden’s “refusal” to shift policy to deal with the migrant surge is an “impeachable offense” but conceded that such proceedings had no chance of passing the House.
Overall, Biden’s coronavirus approval numbers have plummeted in recent months.
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Only 53% of respondents in the latest Quinnipiac poll approved of the president’s handling of the pandemic, down 12 points from the last poll in May. Meanwhile, James Volpe, one of Biden’s 2020 campaign pollsters, found that voters are much more concerned with “immigration,” “crime,” and the “economy” compared to more left-of-center issues such as “climate change” or “race relations.”
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Tags: News, Ted Cruz, Joe Biden, Coronavirus, Vaccination, airlines, Immigration
Original Author: Christian Datoc
Original Location: Biden mulls vaccine travel mandates while migrants with COVID-19 are let over border