The United States is facing the highest level of illegal border crossings in its history, with likely more than 2 million such crossings since President Joe Biden took office.
In the midst of the crisis, California Gov. Gavin Newsom recently announced that, thanks to a newfound budget surplus, California will expand free health care to all illegal immigrants regardless of age, criminal record, or how or when they entered the country.
Why would Newsom provide such an enticement amid this crisis? Because he and Biden are implementing the far-left dream of open borders.
The idea of abolishing Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) was once considered a fringe left idea endorsed only by “The Squad” in Congress. But the fringe is now mainstream in the Democratic Party. The Biden administration’s lax border controls, combined with California’s offer of free health care to those who come, prove that the party has now fully embraced open borders.
It wasn’t that long ago when Democrats such as Sen. Diane Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Republicans such as Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) worked together to try to find a reasonable solution to deal with America’s massive illegal immigration problem. The solution always revolved around a combination of ensuring that U.S. borders were secure and providing certain rights and a pathway to legal status for those already here.
Such a balance was considered critical, since naturally, the pathway would be a lure to new immigrants. But that was then. Democrats are now opening the borders wider than ever and luring them at the same time. They’ve pulled this off without any measurable support from the American people or approving a single law.
Immigrants have been taught to no longer attempt to evade Border Patrol, but rather to turn themselves in and seek “asylum” in the United States. This was a rare occurrence until word got out during the Obama administration that the United States was allowing these seekers to remain in the country while their case was being processed.
The vast majority didn’t qualify for asylum, which is limited only to those who can “establish that race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion was or will be at least one central reason for persecuting the applicant” in their country of origin. Fleeing poverty or crime, as most at our southern border are, doesn’t meet the standard.
But that doesn’t matter, because under President Barack Obama—and now again under Biden—simply seeking it was a ticket into the United States, where they could remain for years as their case was processed through the overwhelmed U.S. immigration system. And, of course, while Europeans and other international travelers were barred from entering the country due to COVID-19 concerns, no such ban applied to those wading across the Rio Grande—not even a test or vaccine requirement!
The Trump administration wisely put a stop to this by requiring such seekers to remain in Mexico while they awaited their hearing. It also implemented the sensible rule that asylum-seekers must seek asylum in the first country to which they flee, which is now most often Mexico, rather than the United States.
On his first day in office, Biden reversed these policies through executive order. It was no doubt drafted by a member of the far-left progressive staff put in place under his power-sharing deal with Sen. Bernie Sanders, which was cut during the campaign. The Supreme Court ruled that Biden’s reversal of the policy failed to follow proper administrative rule-making procedures. But the administration has moved at such a snail’s pace to comply with the ruling that it’s flirting with being held in contempt of the high court.
The Mexican drug cartels have been the biggest beneficiaries of the policy. No one makes it to the U.S. border without paying the cartels, often as much as $10,000 per person. Very rough math puts cartel human trafficking profits at about $10 billion under Biden.
Now, along comes Newsom to add the additional carrot of free health care to anyone who can make it across, a plan that will cost $2.2 billion. Where did he get the money? From the Biden administration, of course! Newsom was able to proudly report a budget surplus because California received $27 billion under the COVID-19 pandemic relief law Biden signed in March 2021.
This allotment was by far the largest for any state; almost twice that of the next closest. Why so much? Because Congress used state unemployment numbers as the basis for determining the amount of aid. California has the nation’s highest unemployment rate, because of its anti-business regulations and strict COVID-19 lockdowns. The $27 billion came at just the right time, allowing Newsom to sweep under the rug the $20 billion his administration blew on fraudulent unemployment claims that it failed to catch.
So the word is now out, not just about the U.S. open border, but that its largest state, which happens to border Mexico, treats illegal immigrants as if they were taxpaying citizens in good standing by now providing both free education and free health care.
The move is especially galling considering that California is failing to provide its legal residents with the most basic services expected from the government. Crime is up dramatically under Newsom, while the state is at the bottom in student-to-teacher ratios and on student proficiency tests. Its road conditions and traffic problems rank among the worst in the country. It leads the country in both homelessness and unemployment.
But these problems are too small to interest Newsom. His focus is on saving the planet through green energy laws and redistributing Californians’ earnings to all international travelers willing to pay a drug cartel to bring them to our border.
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.