Illegal alien apprehensions at the Southwest U.S. border plummeted 27 percent in January, the same month President Donald Trump took office after campaigning on a platform of increased border security and higher numbers of internal deportations. In fact, January marked the month with the lowest illegal alien apprehension rate in nearly a year.
According to data just released by U.S. Customs and Border Protection, border agents at the southwest U.S. border only apprehended 31,575 illegal aliens at the border during the month of January. While still a significant number, that total dropped from a whopping 43,254 apprehensions reported in December.
Another 9,304 members of family units were caught in January, down more than 40 percent from the 16,135 that were caught just the month before. Likewise, while another 4,421 unaccompanied children were apprehended at the U.S. border in January, that total is down about 39 percent from the more than 7,200 kids that were caught in December.
By comparison, border patrol data shows another 47,211 illegal aliens were caught in November, while 46,182 were apprehended in October, marking the final few months of former President Obama’s second term. Border agents had previously reported a heavy wave of illegal immigration at the U.S.-Mexico border heading into Inauguration Day, as thousands of illegal aliens reportedly tried to beat the clock before Trump took office.
Border agents also reported catching about 30 percent fewer illegal aliens attempting to pass through ports of entry at the Southwest border in January, apprehending only 10,899 attempted illegal entries compared to 15,177 in December.
It's not uncommon for illegal alien border crossings to drop in the month of January. Last year, for example, border agents reported catching a far fewer 23,758 illegal aliens. Only time will tell whether this recent drop in apprehensions will remain a permanent trend following the Trump administration's heightened focus on interior immigration enforcement, with promises of increased border security looming on the horizon.