Obama DHS Sec’y Johnson: Migrants KNOW They Can Game Asylum Laws and ‘Low’ Bar to Enter U.S.

On Friday’s broadcast of CNN’s “AC360,” former Obama DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson flippantly said that one reason migrants come to the United States is that they know it’s a low bar to claim asylum and get into the U.S., and then their cases will take years to process.

Johnson said, “Clearly, the state of our asylum system and our laws is one of the reasons that migrants come here. The principal reason[s] are the push factors from Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Cuba, and Venezuela. But the process takes years, somewhere between two to six years.”

“The bar for getting over the initial hump to qualify for asylum by stating a claim of credible fear is relatively low, while the ultimate bar to get asylum is relatively high. But it’s years in between, and migrants know that.”

“And I know from speaking to migrants myself on the southern border when I had the job at DHS that a number of them come here knowing that they may only get to stay here for a few years and get a job but it’s better than the circumstances that they’ve left.”

“So, to fix it requires an act of Congress in all likelihood.”

“You could do much of this through regulation, which would then be challenged in the courts and there are proposals pending in the legislative branch now to try to fix this, but regrettably, because immigration’s become so polarized, it’s impossible to get anything done there.”


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