President Joe Biden issued yet another consequential executive order in the area of immigration on Thursday.
According to a report from United Press International (UPI), the latest order signed by President Biden looks to raise the cap on new refugee admissions in the U.S. to 125,000 by 2022.
Here’s the backstory
When Donald Trump became president, the U.S. capped the number of refugees it would accept per year at 110,000, UPI reported. This was the result of policies enacted by the Obama administration.
During his four years in office, Trump brought that admissions cap down to historic lows: in 2017, Obama’s 110,000 refugee admissions cap was brought down to 50,000, according to UPI; the following year, it was lowered another 5,000 to 45,000; in 2019, it was lowered to 30,000; and in 2020, it hit a measly 18,000.
In his final year, Trump proposed that the refugee cap ought to be set at 15,000. But not on Biden’s watch.
The latest news
On Thursday, Biden signed an executive order ramping the number of refugees America would accept to 125,000 for the year.
In the order, Biden does state that he will consult with Congress on the matter, UPI notes. But with Congress being controlled by the Democrats, it seems unlikely that many changes will be made.
Speaking Thursday, Biden’s Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the move ensures America’s refugee program reflects “our values as a nation.”
“Over the coming months and years, we will rebuild and expand the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program and other humanitarian programs so they reflect our values as a nation and are commensurate with global need, consistent with our domestic laws and international obligations, as well as our fundamental responsibility for the safety and security of the American people,” Blinken said, according to The Hill.
A look ahead
President Biden also made some remarks of his own at the State Department on Thursday.
“It’s going to take time to rebuild what has been so badly damaged, but that’s precisely what we’re going to do,” he declared, as The Hill reported.
The new order from Biden is just the latest of dozens of similar actions regarding immigration that the president has taken since ascending to the Oval Office on Jan. 20th. The goal is clearly to undo all of his predecessor’s policies — and Biden is already well on his way there.