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Biden mulls executive order to curb asylum-seekers

​President Joe Biden delivers remarks urging Congress to pass the Emergency National Security Supplemental Appropriations Act in the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, U.S., on Feb. 6, 2024.

President Joe Biden delivers remarks urging Congress to pass the Emergency National Security Supplemental Appropriations Act in the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, U.S., on Feb. 6, 2024.

REUTERS/Evelyn Hockstein
After House Republicans killed a bipartisan funding bill for border security and Ukraine aid, President Joe Biden is considering using an executive order to limit asylum claims. The order would suspend the American guarantee that anyone has the right to ask for safe haven.

This measure was in the funding bill, but since Republicans are reluctant to give Biden a bipartisan win before the election, he is considering following the same legal roadmap Donald Trump used to limit asylum claims in 2018. Like Trump, Biden’s order would likely face legal challenges.

The order is a sign of Biden’s shift to the right on immigration since he campaigned against Trump’s policies in 2020.

The 2024 calculus: With funding tied up in Congress, an executive order is looking like the only way to reduce illegal migration before November's election. While curbing asylum claims will be controversial on the left, the issue is critical to swing voters, who Biden needs onside to beat Trump. Biden may bet that it is better to look tough on immigration, and that his party’s progressive flank will vote for him regardless.

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