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Biden Admin Looking to Give Illegal Immigrants Federal ID, Access to Government Benefits: Report

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The Biden administration reportedly plans to test providing federal identification cards to illegal immigrants who are awaiting a final decision on their status in the country.

“Recent border crossers and other unauthorized immigrants in the U.S. often do not have I.D.s, making it more difficult to access housing, healthcare, transportation and other benefits,” Axios reported.

Government sources told Axios the issuance of federal I.D. cards would begin as a pilot program.

Congress included $10 million for the “ICE Secure Docket Card program” in the fiscal year 2023 Homeland Security Department appropriations bill.

The proposed legislation also contains $20 million “to enhance legal access for detained individuals” and $10 million for “Alternatives to Detention.”

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“The administration is hoping to get needed Congressional approval before the end of September to roll out a pilot — before a potential Republican takeover in November,” according to Axios.

The federal I.D. card will contain a photo, biographic identifiers and “cutting-edge security features” aimed at helping government officials and noncitizens, an Immigration and Customs Enforcement representative explained to the news outlet.

Do you think illegal immigrants should be given federal identification cards?

ICE said the primary goal of the new cards is to “improve current, inconsistent paper forms that often degrade rapidly in real-world use.”

The cards “could be presented to TSA agents to allow unauthorized immigrants to more easily travel by plane or to access certain state benefit programs,” Axios said.

ICE deportations under the Biden administration dropped by over 70 percent during FY 2021.

“The agency carried out 59,011 deportations in fiscal year 2021, an all-time low, according to historical ICE data. The previous low came in fiscal year 2004, when ICE recorded 175,106 deportations,” CBS News reported.

By way of comparison, ICE removed 185,884 people from the country in FY 2020, when Donald Trump was president. In FY 2019, prior to the coronavirus pandemic, ICE carried out 267,258 removals.

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Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas told CBS News earlier this year that the Biden administration has greatly narrowed the scope of those subject to deportation, focusing on aggravated felons and those identified as presenting national security risks.

“We have fundamentally changed immigration enforcement in the interior,” Mayorkas said.

“For the first time ever, our policy explicitly states that a non-citizen’s unlawful presence in the United States will not, by itself, be a basis for the initiation of an enforcement action,” he added.

“This is a profound shift away from the prior administration’s indiscriminate enforcement.”

Under the Biden administration’s border enforcement policies, the United States has experienced a record surge of migrants crossing illegally into the country.

For FY 2022 there have been 1,746,119 encounters at the southwest border as of June 30, which has already surpassed the entire FY 2021 record number of  1,734,686.

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