President Biden on Friday spoke out against against the widely-criticized tactics used by U.S. Border Patrol agents to corral migrants, in some ways addressing the administration's immediate PR problem but not quite tackling the larger issue concerning immigration advocates.
The most pressing pain point for advocates is the administration's continued use of Title 42, "a Trump-era order that, ostensibly due to the pandemic, allows immigration officials to quickly deport people crossing the border, typically without giving them a chance to apply for asylum," writes HuffPost. But as of late, the conversation has focused mostly on the border agents — and criticism of that shifting spotlight has grown.
Biden vowed Friday that the agents responsible for the disturbing videos and images "will pay," adding that "there is an investigation underway right now and there will be consequences." The president also said he takes responsibility for the chaos at the border — but that still does not address Title 42.
On Friday afternoon, Department of Homeland Secrurity Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas confirmed that "there are no longer any migrants in the camp underneath the Del Rio International Bridge," per Bloomberg.
When asked if sending Haitians migrants back to Haiti under Title 42-driven expulsions would be considered "immoral," Mayorkas replied "no" because "we are doing this out of a public health need. ... It is not an immigration policy that we would embrace," per Newsweek. He also reiterated his condemnation of the images of agents on horseback, and gave an update on the investigation into the matter.