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Secretary Mayorkas' Call for Immigration Reform and Executive Action on Border Security

Posted by Paul Saluja | Jun 06, 2024

In a recent proclamation, President Biden has taken decisive steps to address the ongoing challenges at our southern border. Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas echoed the urgency of these measures, highlighting the critical need for legislative action and the recent executive actions aimed at bolstering border security.

The Call for Congressional Action

Secretary Mayorkas emphasized the urgent need for Congress to reform our broken immigration system. Despite bipartisan efforts, Congress has once again failed to pass essential border security legislation. The proposed legislation represented the most robust border enforcement tools in the past three decades, developed through months of collaboration among Republican and Democratic Senators and members of the Biden-Harris Administration. The failure to pass these measures leaves our immigration system in a precarious state, struggling to cope with the realities at the border.

Executive Action in the Face of Congressional Inaction

In response to Congress's inaction, the Biden Administration has taken executive action to strengthen border security. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) have issued a joint Interim Final Rule. This rule aims to manage the high levels of migrant encounters at the southern border more effectively by:

  1. Deeming Certain Individuals Ineligible for Asylum: Those who cross illegally between ports of entry will be ineligible for asylum during times of high migrant encounters.
  2. Raising the Standard for Adjudicating Protection Claims: This measure ensures that only those with legitimate claims receive the necessary protections.
  3. Expediting the Delivery of Consequences: This allows for faster processing and consequences for those found ineligible for asylum.

These actions are designed to deter irregular migration and manage the high volume of encounters more efficiently. Over the last three fiscal years, a majority of southwest border encounters have resulted in removal, return, or expulsion. In the past year alone, more than 750,000 people have been removed or returned – the highest number since 2010.

The Need for Legislative Reform

While these executive actions are critical, Secretary Mayorkas stressed that they are no substitute for comprehensive legislative reform. Only Congress can provide the additional statutory authorities and resources needed to create a functional and secure immigration system. U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services require these resources to fulfill their duties effectively.


At Saluja Law, we recognize the complexities and challenges of immigration law and the critical importance of a secure and fair immigration system. The recent executive actions by the Biden Administration are a necessary response to immediate needs at the border. However, long-term solutions lie in comprehensive legislative reform. We join Secretary Mayorkas in urging Congress to act swiftly and decisively to fix our broken immigration system, ensuring the safety and security of the American people while upholding the values that define our nation.

For those navigating the complexities of immigration law, our team at Saluja Law is here to provide expert guidance and support. Contact us to learn more about how we can assist you in these challenging times.

About the Author

Paul Saluja

Paul Saluja is a distinguished legal professional with over two decades of experience serving clients across a spectrum of legal domains. Graduating from West Virginia State University in 1988 with a bachelor's degree in chemistry, he continued his academic journey at Ohio Northern University, gr...

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