Migration Policy Institute
Recognizing Changing Enforcement and Crossing Trends at the U.S.-Mexico Border
Gil Kerlikowske, former Commissioner, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (2014-17); Fellow, Institute of Politics, Harvard Kennedy School
Arturo Sarukhan, former Ambassador of Mexico to the United States (2007-13); Nonresident Senior Fellow, Brookings Institution
Randy Capps, Director of Research, U.S. Programs, MPI
Doris Meissner, Senior Fellow and Director, U.S. Immigration Policy Program, MPI
In the midst of efforts to further ramp up enforcement at the U.S.-Mexico border even as illegal crossings are a fraction of what they were at their peak in 2000, MPI research sketches the changing realities at the border and offers data that should help inform the policy debate.
This discussion features the release of two MPI publications (A Revolving Door No More? A Statistical Profile of Mexican Adults Repatriated from the United States and Advances in U.S.-Mexico Border Enforcement: A Review of the Consequence Delivery System) that provide a comprehensive analysis of U.S. immigration enforcement at the border and the Consequence Delivery System used by U.S. Customs and Border Protection to analyze the effectiveness of its efforts, as well as map the significant changes in Mexican crossing trends and intent to re-enter the United States after deportation.
The reports provide a catalyst for assessing the contemporary border enforcement picture and progress in achieving “operational control” of the Southwest border; the next steps for the U.S.-Mexico border management relationship that has been built over the past two decades; and what policy responses by the United States, Mexico, and Northern Triangle would be most responsive to the changing nature of migrant flows in the region.
As the Trump administration and Congress consider the future of border policy and funding proposals for a border wall, this discussion evaluates the state of the border, the effectiveness of various enforcement strategies, current trends in apprehensions and the flows of migrants, and what the changing realities mean for the migration policies and agendas of the United States, Mexico, and the region.