For all those who think the current increase of unaccompanied minors entering the United States is some sudden phenomenon, think again. There were warning signs for years, but no one in Washington was paying attention. Now there is this 41-page report from the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) cited by The Washington Post:
The Post reports:
The researchers’ observations were among the warning signs conveyed to the Obama administration over the past two years as a surge of Central American minors has crossed into south Texas illegally. More than 57,000 have entered the United States this year, swamping federal resources and catching the government unprepared.
The administration did too little to heed those warnings, according to interviews with former government officials, outside experts and immigrant advocates, leading to an inadequate response that contributed to this summer’s escalating crisis.
Federal officials viewed the situation as a “local problem,” said Victor Manjarrez Jr., a former Border Patrol station chief who led the UTEP study. The research, conducted last year, was funded by the Department of Homeland Security and published in March. A broader crisis was “not on anyone’s radar,” Manjarrez added, even though “it was pretty clear this number of kids was going to be the new baseline.”
And you don’t think the White House ignored the report? Here is what the Post reported when it spoke with Cecilia Muñoz, Obama’s domestic policy adviser. According to the Post, Muñoz “said the administration and key agencies had made adjustments over time to deal with the influx of children but then responded with urgency once federal officials realized in May that the numbers would far exceed internal projections of 60,000 minors crossing the border in 2014.”
That number could now be as high as 90,000 minors this year.