Among President Trump’s campaign promises was the promise to crack-down on illegal immigration. The latest numbers from Pew indicate that he’s doing just that.
After declining precipitously since 2009, arrests made by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE) rose 30 percent in the first full year of President Donald Trump’s administration, an analysis released Thursday by the Pew Research Center revealed.
ICE agents made a total of 143,470 arrests in fiscal year 2017, as compared against 110,104 in FY 2016. That number is the highest in three years, according to Pew’s analysis of the past nine years of ICE arrests.
That surge happened almost exclusively following Trump’s swearing in: Between Inauguration Day on January 20 and the end of the fiscal year on September 30, ICE made 42 percent more arrests than it did over the same period in FY 2016.
Although those numbers increased, they are still substantially down from FY 2009, when ICE arrested 297,898 people. Pew’s analysis shows that ICE arrests fell continuously over the course of President Barack Obama’s administration.
This decline is likely attributable to the restricted removal priorities of the Obama White House, which focused on arresting and deporting those illegal aliens who were deemed threats to national security, public safety, and border security.
Shortly after taking office, Trump issued an executive order that expanded the category of priorities for removal to include those who had committed, been charged with, or convicted of any crime, not simply those posing a threat to the aforementioned three concerns. The expanded order also allowed the targeting of any illegal resident who had “abused any program related to receipt of public benefits,” e.g., illegally received welfare benefits.
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