Perception Matters: Illegal Crossings Plummet Under Trump

Do you ever wonder how Democrats can sell this seemingly-contradictory narrative about Donald Trump? The one where, on one day, they’re telling us that his busy first two months have been a fraud and that he’s actually done almost nothing of significance…and then on the next day, they’re telling us that he’s bringing totalitarianism to the United States with every move he makes. How can these both be true?

Well, the mad genius of Trump’s tenure in office thus far may actually be that he can effect great change in this nation, even without doing all that much. And, in a weird way, it speaks to the heart of conservatism. The Dow Jones Industrial Average isn’t breaking records because of anything the president has done. Jobs aren’t coming back to the U.S. because Trump levied tariffs on fleeing companies. Great, positive things are happening in this country because we have a president who actually inspires us.

Just look at the border. Not one brick of Trump’s big, beautiful wall has been laid. No laws have been changed. No new Border Patrol officers have been hired. Executive orders have been signed and immigration officials have been told, “You may now do your job again,” but that’s about it. The real, practical measures have yet to be implemented.

And yet, Trump’s rhetoric alone has had a huge impact. According to Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly, the number of illegal immigrants making the trip into the U.S. has plummeted since Trump assumed the presidency.

“Since President Trump took office on January 20, we have seen a dramatic drop in numbers,” Kelly said. “This trend is encouraging because it means many fewer people are putting themselves and their families at risk of exploitation, assault and injury by human traffickers and the physical dangers of the treacherous journey north.

The federal government comes to a rough determination of crossings by measuring apprehensions at the border. For January and February, those apprehensions dropped 40%, a clear sign that the message is getting through to people in Mexico and Central America. The days of getting through, being briefly detained, and then being sent to live with family in Ohio…those days are over. The carrot of amnesty is gone. That message has had a tremendous impact, even without any significant legislation or funding behind it.

“The drop in apprehensions shows a marked change in trends,” Kelly said. “Since the administration’s implementation of executive orders to enforce immigration laws, apprehensions and inadmissible activity is trending toward the lowest monthly total in at least the last five years.”

The genius of Trump’s campaign, his presidency, and his movement may be that, by the time it’s all said and done, some of his most audacious promises may be rendered unnecessary. And hey, if we can severely limit illegal immigration with nothing more than tough talk and enforcement of our current laws, we’ll be happy to put that wall money towards something else.

Or just back to the taxpayers…

Okay, we’re dreaming again.

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