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Border & Immigration

Roundtable: Change In Asylum Rules Strands Thousands

People wait to apply for asylum in the United States along the border, Tuesday, July 16, 2019, in Tijuana, Mexico.
Associated Press
People wait to apply for asylum in the United States along the border, Tuesday, July 16, 2019, in Tijuana, Mexico.
The Trump Administration's new rules on asylum mean migrants must receive an asylum determination from another country before applying in the U.S. If it takes affect, it will strand thousands in Mexico.

Roundtable Guests:

Max Rivlin-Nadler, KPBS News

Matthew Hall, San Diego Union-Tribune

Michael Smolens, San Diego Union-Tribune

Asylum rules change

Hundreds of immigrants arriving in Tijuana and other border crossings this week in hopes of getting into the United States received more bad news. The process of asking for asylum in the U.S. was already extremely difficult, but on Tuesday the Trump administration announced new rules. Now, the new rule says asylum seekers would first have to apply for asylum in a country they've passed through on their way to the United States before applying for asylum here.

Lawsuits from the American Civil Liberties Union and other immigrant advocacy groups were swiftly filed in federal courts in San Francisco and Washington, D.C.


On Thursday, acting Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Mark Morgan added another twist by saying the policy is actually just a pilot program and only in effect at two border stations in Texas.

Related: New Asylum Rule Leaves Migrants In Tijuana Confused And Desperate

Trump attacks women of color via Twitter

Donald Trump used Twitter on Sunday to call on four minority Congresswomen who have strongly criticized his immigration policies to “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime-infested places from which they came.” He doubled down on the attacks at a rally on Wednesday.

The fact that all four were citizens, and three were born here, did not seem to matter to the president, his spokespeople or his supporters. The Union-Tribune and other mainstream media called his statements textbook racism, and the use of the word “racism” has caused a debate among reporters and editors.

VIDEO: Roundtable: Change In Asylum Rules Strands Thousands

Democracy Day is an effort that started in 2022 to draw attention to the crisis facing American democracy, provide the public with the context and information they need, and bring all types of media together to sound the alarm collectively. KPBS is a media partner in this collaborative.