The recent influx of Haitian migrants into the U.S. has resulted in bipartisan criticism of the Biden administration’s immigration policies.
Making matters worse, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas confirmed that migrants were not tested for COVID-19 before they were released into the United States.
“We certainly had some individuals get sick”
Mayorkas made the revelation during a press conference on Friday, declaring: “We did not test that population of individuals.”
Specifically, he was referring to the more than 15,000 Haitian migrants who recently crossed into America illegally and occupied a makeshift campsite underneath a bridge in Del Rio, Texas. The encampment has since been largely cleared by the Biden administration, a process that included releasing some of them into communities on this side of the border.
This has led to concerns about, among other things, the potential spread of COVID-19. Those concerns are sure to grow in response to the unsettling revelation from Mayorkas.
During the press conference, he went on to confirm that he was not certain whether any of the immigrants might have contracted or spread the virus while under the bridge.
“We certainly had some individuals get sick, not specifically with COVID, to my knowledge,” he said.
“I don’t think it’s the same thing”
Given the constant media narrative regarding the dangers of the delta variant, however, it would be an impressive feat for so many individuals in such close quarters to avoid spreading the virus.
While the Biden administration has not prioritized COVID-19 mitigation measures related to incoming undocumented immigrants, it is also facing criticism over the much higher standards to which American citizens and legal visitors are held. For example, European visitors must prove their vaccination status. And most Americans are keenly aware of the requirements the White House has already implemented on individuals and employers.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki responded to a question highlighting the apparent double standard, though her explanation left many viewers confused.
“They’re not intending to stay here for a lengthy period of time,” she claimed of the migrants. “I don’t think it’s the same thing. It’s not the same thing.”
Reports indicate that at least some of the migrants have been deported under a health code policy implemented by former President Donald Trump, but it is unclear exactly how many.