The US has a history of southern border problems, and most border states believe it’s gotten worse over time. That’s why, when Joe Biden said that he didn’t think the southern border problem was a crisis, it earned the worst possible response from those states who were on the southern border. Let’s see what happened.

Biden Refuses To Call It a Crisis

The southern border of the US, despite its massive protections, is still relatively porous, with illegal immigrants and cargo entering the country illegally every day. It’s a well-known fact to many people who don’t even live in border states.

Source: Flickr/U.S. Secretary of Defense

Yet, President Biden was adamant that the southern border’s porosity wasn’t a “crisis.” Naturally, this garnered outcry from the Republicans, but also his own Democratic representatives who know the situation along the border.

Rapid Increase in Border Encounters

Border encounters happen relatively often along the states that form it. The US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) takes note of these border encounters, and their statistics reveal an alarming trend in the most recent years.

Source: Flickr/U.S. Department of Defense

In 2023, the CBP recorded an estimated 2.3 million encounters along the southern border. Compared to the 1.7 million encounters in 2021, this is a massive increase in the amount of encounters occurring there.

Incentivizing Immigration From the South

Republicans have long argued that the policies implemented by Democrats (and specifically, the President himself) have made it attractive for immigrants to enter the country from the south. This, they contend, increases the likelihood of these incidents happening.

Source: Flickr/Nathan Gibbs

However, experts who are less politically inclined point to several other factors that might make the US a more attractive spot for immigrants from Central and South America. The region’s economic uncertainty has led to many people fleeing from other countries, seeking a better way of life.

Sanctuary Cities Exacerbate The Problem

A recent, troubling development is the establishment of “Sanctuary Cities.” These cities are set up in Democrat strongholds and serve as a place for illegal and undocumented immigrants to relocate to avoid deportation.

Source: Flickr/Steve Rhodes

The relocation has triggered a backlash from politicians as a way to bypass US immigration law. Biden is slated to discuss immigration concerns before the start of the 2024 National Elections.

The Border Problem “Crisis

Biden’s statements about the southern border’s problems not being a crisis stem from a press interaction at the White House South Lawn. He stated that, at this point, he didn’t think it was on the same scale as a crisis.

Source: Wikimedia Commons

However, despite not calling the problem a crisis, he quickly said he wanted to have changes at the border. The president was unclear in what direction he expected to make these changes, but most listeners were willing to draw their own conclusions.

Pushing Republican Colleagues

One of the noteworthy things President Biden mentioned was how much he wanted to make changes at the border. He underlined that since he took office, he’s been pushing his Republican peers along the southern border.

Source: Flickr/ShashiBellamkonda

He also noted that there have been negotiations ongoing about the border and the governing legislation over the last five weeks. Social media users who heard his statements were unhappy with what he said and were very vocal about their dissatisfaction.

Users In A Rage

Twitter/X users came out to state their unhappiness with the President’s words. Some noted his reluctance to declare there was a crisis at the southern border. Others underlined how he skirted the question and played it off as less of an issue than it was.

Source: Flickr/otzberg

The statements got steadily worse over time, and many called out the Democrat’s handling of a worsening immigrant situation. Others stated that the President was a disgrace and an embarrassment for his role in exacerbating the problem along the southern border.

Other Users Lash Back

Supporters of the Biden administration were adamant that critical users were making a big deal out of nothing. They stated that Republicans manufactured the southern border crisis as a political talking point instead of a serious national issue.

Source: Flickr/Victoria Pickering

This sort of thinking is common in political camps that look at the problem solely as a political issue. Funding for improving security on the southern wall has also been debated by both parties, but coming to an agreement has been slow going.

Fundraising and Refusals

The Biden administration initially intended to raise funds for Israel, Taiwan, Ukraine, and the southern border as a single aid push. Unfortunately, several politicians saw an issue with bundling the southern border’s needs with Ukraine’s.

Source: Flickr/Ervins Strauhmanis

In another deal, the Biden administration offered to give southern border states more funding, but with a catch. They would have to expedite asylum claim adjudications. The states rejected this offer, seeing it as a method of pushing them to do things on Washington’s schedule, not theirs.

Working Together To Improve The Border

Congress is divided on what they should do about the issues at the border. The Biden administration acknowledged the lack of action from Congress and stated they would use every tool they had to address the changes they wanted to see at the southern border.

Source: Flickr/Mesa0789

Some lawmakers point out that the changes at the border will help some immigrants, but the significant problems stem from the immigration system. Many cases pop up that aren’t covered by immigration law, making it even more difficult for immigrants to get support.

Fixing the Border Issue Will Take Time

Like so many of the US’s problems, there’s no simple solution to the border issue. Republican states along the border want certain things to be put in place, and a Democrat government simply won’t accept those terms. This leads to a standoff between state and federal authorities.

Source: Flickr/Travis Wise

It also doesn’t help when the government decides to dangle funding for the border at Republican states, only to bundle that funding with concessions the states have no interest in offering. It’s a fine line to walk, and trying to do too much will cause more issues than it will solve.