Amid an overwhelming surge of thousands of Haitian migrants who set up camp in Del Rio, Texas in recent days, the Biden administration has begun deportation flights designed to return the masses of arrivals back to their home country, despite growing outrage being voiced by Democrat lawmakers about the plan, as reporting from the Associated Press reveals.
The staggering influx of migrants from the recently earthquake-ravaged country reportedly soared to more than 12,000 individuals, most of whom were living under and around a bridge in the southern border town, under living conditions that have been described as squalid, as CBS News noted.
Though the Biden administration initially mounted what appeared to be an attempt to hide the worsening situation from the public by halting news organization drone photography over the impacted area, initiation of the deportations suggests that the White House is taking a tougher line than some may have expected in terms of addressing the crisis.
According to the AP, roughly 320 Haitians touched down in Port-au-Prince Monday on a total of three flights, with another six planes set to arrive Tuesday, and seven flights are set to begin on a daily basis as of Wednesday.
Border Patrol Chief Raul Ortiz said on Sunday that approximately 3,300 migrants had been removed from the Del Rio camp area since Friday, and the hope is that all of those remaining could be returned to their homeland within a week.
Many of the Haitians being deported from the U.S. have voiced concerns about their own safety upon returning home, with one such arrival, Fabricio Jean, saying that for him, his wife, and his daughters, “in Haiti, there is no security. The country is in a political crisis.”
In its reporting of the administration’s deportation efforts, the AP suggested that the mission could end up being “one of America’s swiftest, large-scale expulsions of migrants or refugees in decades,” a characterization with perjorative connotations sure to gain traction with those on the left who are already expressing disagreement with the removal of the recent arrivals.
Progressive “Squad” member Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) took particular issue with the situation, saying that removals should be stopped, humanitarian relief eligibility expanded, and COVID-19 mitigation assistance should be provided to Haitians, adding, “The Biden administration cannot claim it is doing everything it can to support the Haitian community while continuing to unjustly deport Haitians as the island weathers its worst political, public health and economic crises yet.”
Furthermore, a group of over 50 far-left Democrat legislators, including Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Cori Bush (D-MO), and Maxine Waters (D-CA) have already written to Biden’s Secretary of Homeland Security and Secretary of Health and Human Services, imploring the administration to “suspend deportations and expulsions indefinitely” for Haitians already here, but whether their words will make any difference, only time will tell.