Democrats in Texas and other states where immigration has been a lightning rod issue are growing increasingly uneasy that the White House is walking into a political buzz saw in its zeal to unwind hard-line Trump administration policies.
Biden has not yet implemented expansive policy changes. The vast majority of migrants arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border are still being turned away. Deportations are still taking place and there’s still no pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.
But the softer rhetoric and modest changes announced so far by the Biden administration — such as admitting some migrants who have waited in Mexico for months and announcing he would halt deportations — raise the prospects of a new influx of migrants entering the country. There’s already an uptick in migrants heading to the border and some have crossed and been released in some communities already grappling with the pandemic, a strained health care system and high unemployment.